Free Instruction with Carolyn – First Annual Winter Program Nov ’09 – Feb ’10

I am ready to start us on a new adventure. Fall and Winter is the perfect time to take it slowly, stay in touch and meet new friends and so I am delighted to introduce you to:

Uberstreichen Exercises – Rollkur no more

My Uberstreichen Exercises are ground schooling to introduce the horse to the bridle for all disciplines to support both beginning and advanced training under saddle and are step two of the Carolyn Resnick Method to support all equestrian pursuits.

As part of my continuing effort to support my blog readers, I will be offering free beginning instruction on the Uberstreichen Exercises each week over the Winter.

To qualify and register for free instruction: Leave your full name, a brief introduction of your experience with horses, your interest in my Method, our history if we have one, and the name of your horse and his personal training background in the comments section of the blog. After each blog posting please check in by leaving your full name in the comments section of the blog so that I know you are participating and have read the new material. I will offer more support to the regular students. As usual I will not be able to answer all questions. If you need to catch up or need more support or a review then I would encourage you to take a private telephone coaching session with me at the regular rate. For Insider Circle people, when you leave your name please also state that you are an Insider Circle student. The Uberstreichen Exercises are the next step for you but remember to keep warming up your horse with the Waterhole Rituals finishing with a lot of Companion Walking, trotting and halting before moving into the Uberstreichen Exercises each day.

Purpose: The Uberstreichen Exercises will teach a horse to collect and lengthen from the slightest request from light rein aids, gas pedal and brakes for a bit as well as bitless riding. All exercises are taught with only a halter and short rope.

How to start: There are 10 Uberstreichen Exercises, 8 are done at the sides of the horse and 2 standing in front of the horse. 5 Exercises are focused on training the horse to respond to a rein aid to relax and to give at the poll, neck and shoulders and 5 are lateral flexions. Both sets of 5 begin standing still facing your horse and then they advance to walking and trotting in hand. The beginning ones are the easiest to apply. They build in difficulty very naturally so when you get to the more difficult ones, they are even easier than the first ones because of how the relationship is building. In a slow and methodical pace, you will create a connection from the ground that well create a centaur ride and aids that are light from a Method that is based in lightness. Utilizing all 10 Exercises you will see significant results in two to four months in producing self-carriage without a contact rein. But take as long as you like. It might take you longer because I am not working directly with you or you might have a horse that you will need to take more time with. It is important to take it slowly. Training horses is like running a vacuum cleaner. If you are in a hurry, the vacuum cleaner is not as effective as it would be if you pushed it slowly.

Work with the Uberstreichen Exercises for about 15 minutes a day. You can continue your usual program. If you have a program already the 15 minutes will be very beneficial. If you have no program then you can take an hour with them with lots of breaks. Start with the beginning exercises each day and work through them. Move on to the next Uberstreichen Exercise only when you get the desired result with the one before. Each day your horse will respond differently. Sometimes he will be easy and sometimes he will be locked. If he is locked, do not move on and enjoy the process of making a real connection and a true release. During the first week you might only do one exercise. Over the course of a week do not do more than three different levels as a horse needs plenty of repetition with these kind of exercises so they become second nature to him and that he can hold the posture you ask him to maintain on his own for short intervals.

Horses on stall-rest can be trained in these exercises with a bit of adjustment that I will explain later. With a horse on stall-rest, give him as much time as you can. A horse welcomes the time you spend with him. It helps him relax, de-stress and connect with you which helps in the healing process.

When is a horse ready to begin with the Uberstreichen Exercises? When you have a good working relationship at liberty with the Waterhole Rituals™, you are ready to start with the Uberstreichen Exercises. You can also start the exercises with a horse that has good ground manners and attitude. You should be able to touch and rub your horse anywhere and pick up his feet easily and when you put his foot back down you can set it gently on the ground on a designated spot. You also need to be able to hold his foot off the ground as long as you need without the horse leaning his weight on you. When you can achieve this, you and your horse have an ability to work together well enough to begin to work with the Uberstreichen Exercises. You should also be able to fly spray your horse and he will stand relaxed. When you can do this, you have the skill in changing your horse’s mind and getting him to do something he would rather not do because you will be working with resistance to achieve relaxation. Your horse should be respectful and obedient naturally over small matters and enjoy your company. You need to be able to drive your horse forward on a rope from your request because it is something you will be doing with the Exercises. Your horse needs to be able to walk at your side and halt without the influence of the rope. If your horse cannot do these things, the Waterhole Rituals™ will help you to gain this kind of partnership, trust, connection and horsemanship skills you will need to be able to start the Uberstreichen Exercises. If your horse is not ready yet to do the Uberstreichen Exercises, in the spring I be offering another class on the Waterhole Rituals™ that you can attend.

The tack you will need is a halter, but not a rope halter, and a lead rope of any length. Short is the easiest to manage. You will need to train on a flat 20 meter circle with proper footing. A surface that is not too deep or too hard. A surface that is too hard hurts the joints and too deep hurts the ligaments.

I will run this program each Thursday, so the next one will appear a week from now when we will examine the benefits of the Uberstreichen Exercises.

While the free program is going on, please share anything off the subject that you want to about your uplifting and fun experiences with your horses and the magic they bring into your life. I would love to read them. Lastly, as I am instructing you, I do not focus on solving problems. If you get stuck, I will work with you in how to go forward. If you find yourself struggling with the Exercises, discontinue the instruction. The indication that you are on the right path is that the material is easy to understand, apply and enjoyable for both you and your horse. It would be a good idea if you keep notes and a journal and share it with the class in the comments section.


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Kerrie Stepnick - 7 years ago Reply

Tricia, I couldn’t get the link to function which I provided, so here is a youtube of Silke Vallenin playing at liberty with her horses using her motorized wheelchair:

Carolyn, I’m not intending to big up Parelli – I’m so glad I went with you instead – only to show what a person can do with horses. I hope it is not problem that I alerted everyone to Silke’s work.

Kerrie Stepnick - 7 years ago Reply

To Tricia Myler: Thanks for sharing your story. Here is wishing you all the courage and joy you can get with your horse journey. Consider yourself fortunate for not having lived through the decades of forceful horsemanship that so many of us are here to lament. Don’t let anyone tell you that horses are not for you. One example of why that is not true is Silke Vallentin ( ) who works horses at liberty from a motorized wheelchair.


Tricia Myler - 7 years ago Reply

I found you via endless hours of trolling the web, looking for ideas that resonate for me and for the horses I work with. Also found you via Path of the Horse…nice coincidence…or maybe just the way the universe is supposed to work if we let it, huh?

Have loved horses my entire life…and in my mid-fifties finally decided to stop wishing about what “should have been” and instead figured out how to bring them into my life…so I worked at a friend’s barn, trading muckouts for rides, then worked at a riding stable, doing their office computer work, and their muckouts for 16 horses, in return for an occasional trail ride. Several years back I talked a friend into letting me practice some natural horsemanship ideas with her “yard ornament” horse. I am proud to say that he now has manners, is not afraid of people, can be ridden with rope halter and leadrope, and no longer tries to fend people away by hitting them with his head–thanks to consistent and purposeful work wth him. I still drive 100 miles one way twice a month to be (and work ) with this horse.

Finally got to take a few riding lessons at age 57, then a brain tumor waylaid me for a while this past year.

There are new physical issues due to the radiation for the tumor, but I am again working with Keenah (grade quarterhorse-15 yrs), and have begun working with another Belgian/Quarter mix named Misfire, age 15 years. Riding them bareback, lots of groundwork, beginning to apply the watering hole concepts, spending lots of “be together” time. My balance is better ON the back of a horse than on the ground!!

I refuse to listen to those confused folks who say that I am too old to do this type of work with horses; people can say what they want, but my time spent learning about (and with) horses is what keeps me alive, happy, and sane.

I won’t post so much next time, but I just had to write all this, at least once.

I feel that in so many ways my life is just beginning–and it is–the life I’ve always wanted (with horses) is happening. Differently than how I dreamed as a little girl, but just as good, just as fulfilling, because I’ve worked so hard to make it happen in spite of lots of things. The work, (figuring out how to create a horse-filled life) has made it so much sweeter actually. My closet smells like horses, I have a barn jacket that I get to wear at a real HORSE barn, and I LOVE all of it!!!!

And, finally, I have to say… finding a site like yours is like finding a drink of water in the desert! Another place to find things to help my horses, and myself. You are bookmarked!!!!

Thanks to you, and thanks for what your ideas will do for horses–mine and others

Tricia Myler

Sherri - 7 years ago Reply

I have a former PMU mare who was a terrible bucker and rearer. There seemed to be no end to it and no signal to the beginning of these bucking and rearing antics. Until…..I found natural horsemanship of my own brand after much observation and time , lots of time as well as my developing a language we could both understand we are now able to go out for a long ride and even children ride this horse she has become the most docile creature I know. She will lead without a lead line and knows her leader is trust worthy.

I am here to gain knowledge of your methods and learn better ways to communicate with my horse.

Jodie Bacon - 7 years ago Reply

I have a 10 yr old Arabian mare that was used by previous owners as a barrel racing horse.I have owned her for two months now and her and I are bonding well.This past week-end I decided to take my saddle and placed it on the rack in the alley soon as she spotted the saddle,it was a scary reaction for me..she became agitated and stressed.Could this be post traumatic stress? This little mare is most beautifull with longing heart for love..


windhorsesue - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Caroline
Late Joiner!
Sunrise and I will follow happily along behind – will post our details in a current blog reply. THANKSSS!!!!!

Kay Sinclair - 7 years ago Reply

Hi My name is Kay Sinclair. I grew up on a farm where horses were for work not pleasure. I loved riding out through through the neighbours paddocks by myself for hours. After leaving home my jouney with horses came to an end but always grabbed any opportunity that presented itself to ride. It wasn’t until I cmae back to settle in my home area that I got heavily involved with horses again buying my own and having him stay at commercial trail riding business. Through the owner of the business I became very involved with a differnt type of trainning with a gentleman called Merv Kildey whose method of working with horses was very inspirational based on his softness and connection with the horses. He always believed when horses were bougth to him with a “problem” the actual problem was with the owner!

I ended up wotking at the business and leading trail rides so got to work with a gropup of 24 horses. This is were I met Lyn Scott and our friendship has grown over the years. I now am teaching at a high school and recently lost my faithful horse that was a large part of my life at the trial riding business. With having another horse come into my life and listening to Lyn’s experiences I started to become more and more interested in Carolyn’s rituals with Harry to develop a deep bond between us. So this is taking a while but prepared to put in the time and am not riding him until I feel we have that bond and he is listening and following my lead on the ground. This has met with some resistance and surprise from some of my friends.

So I am very interested in next program on the waterhole rituals have your video and meditation video. I was interested in the other excersises but not necessarily doing them yet. I have only just worked out to access them, I think So looking forward to working together

John Barry - 7 years ago Reply


My name is John Barry, a 53 year old male, married to Leanna Kielian who was in your last in the box program. I am working with two of our five horses, Raisin, my 14 year old retired gelding quarter horse, blown right rear stiffle, and no longer ridable, and Murphy a 12 year old, never raced, TB gelding. I am relatively new to horses, adopting a pair of premarin mares with my ex wife in 2004. One of the mares and both foals went with her when we parted ways and I began following the path of the bridle horse in the Californio Vaquero tradition with a 20 something ranch horse, JR, who had been there and done that. JR took care of this novice rider and showed me that I should listen to my horse and get the feel of him. The remaining premarin mare shattered his leg in December 2006 after way too short a time together. Raisin, his replacement came with a veiled heart, and a blown stiffle that somehow didn’t show up in his vet check. After a fall on trail on a nearly level slope, we discovered the cause and a new phase of my journey with horses.

Wedding Leanna, we merged our herds and are on a path to discover more about being with horses. Pony the PM was happier with her own and did not want to befriend any of the rest of the herd. With great sorrow, she went back to her friends at United Pegasus and is content sharing space with those who had been similarly used.

Our herd now consists of Prefect, a retired 29 YO Hannoverian/TB gelding; AMA, a 19 YO retired Andalusian broodmare; True, AMA’s 2 YO filly and Leanna’s in the box horse; Murphy, a 12 YO unraced TB gelding; and Raisin, QH gelding who is enjoying not being ridden with his bad leg.

I worked with Murphy following your waterhole rituals, and am having a great time being with him and creating the bond that we will need for me to resume riding and build my skills.

John Barry

IcieMeg - 7 years ago Reply

Leave your full name (Meg), a brief introduction of your experience with horses (horses first as teenager and off/on through current time – currently 2 Icelandic geldings), your interest in my Method (learned about you from Stinahumana on Youtube), our history if we have one (n/a), and the name of your horse and his personal training (Bangsi & Twistur we have for trail riding – I am using a clicker reward type methodology with lots of groundwork at liberty and working to finding better fitting saddles to begin riding more).

Saw the Uberstreichen Exercises on Youtube this morning and came to your blog to investigate. Didn’t know you were doing this over the winter, but will try to follow along with whatever you have to offer.

I like that you aren’t a round pen based method and not just a clone of many of the natural horsemanship trainers. I like the rapport developed with the horses and working on groundwork before worrying so much about riding.

Susan Garvin - 7 years ago Reply

Hello, my name is Susan Garvin, I’m a Brit, been living in Italy for the last 30 years. I started with ponies over 50 years ago in the good old pony club and while that gave me a lot of good basics, especially in horse and pony care, it also meant I’ve had to ‘unlearn’ a lot! Once I got to Italy I couldn’t find an instructor or a ‘method’/’school’ that resonated with my ideas and what and how I wanted to ride, dominance riding traditions are still very firmly in place here. Finally however I now have a classically trained (Philippe Karl) instructress and am in touch with many people who want to ride and to train in better ways – apart from the riding aspect there is here a very encouraging and growing interest in free work, ground work and so on.
I’ve read ‘Naked Liberty’ and was ‘hooked’ from the start. I’ve ordered the Waterhold Ritual dvd and will definitely get the new series as soon as it’s out!
I shared my life with a part-Lippizaner gelding, Ghibli, for 25 years and when he passed away four years ago Michy came into my life – I was looking for a smallish quiet horse to do mainly trekking with, and Michy is a 16.3 anglo-arab, now 14 years old, very nervous out on the trail alone…He was born and bred to jump but never really got far in that as his owner had no time (thank goodness!). Consequently while Michy was only semi-trained to be ridden he was unspoiled physically and still very open mentally so at 14 he has excellent health, legs, back etc. I’ve learned so much from him already, mainly about myself (that’s probably why I’m here on this blog now….) but also about him and horses in general; with Ghibli I didn’t need to ‘bother’ since he was so humbly accepting and obedient, so I never knew what was there to learn, whereas with Michy I cannot avoid seeing what I need to learn….we’ve both made a lot of progress in trust, respect, and balance of all kinds and I want to take all that very much deeper. He’s a generous affectionate playful horse who is overcoming his extreme panic/flight responses very admirably. I’ve become so much more patient, accepting, humble, open and joyful in my relationship with him.
This is a bit long, thanks for reading thus far! I’m so looking forward to sharing this course with so many other like-minded people – it can get very lonely, when you feel you are the only one for miles and miles around …. I am sure many others in this group know just what I mean!

Paula Sanderson - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn – I just saw this today and would love to follow the instruction and try the exercises with my horses. I was disappointed when you canceled the WHR program for this winter so this sounds very exciting. I have several horses at different stages of their training but the one I would try this with is a 14 year old Morgan named Axel – he was a rescue horse and has been a difficult horse to train and ride but is really starting to come along with his dressage training thanks to my trainer Farah. She did one of your programs and she has also worked with me and my horses on the WHRs so I am familiar with the rituals. I’m really looking forward to learning these exercises and to the teleseminar on Sunday. Thank you so much for offering this training! Very awesome!

Sandy McMahon - 7 years ago Reply

My horse is a palomino, Rocky Mountain gelding. His registered name is OR Yankees’ Second Chance and he is called by Chance. Chance is seven years old and had only two owners before coming to me, his breeder and then his first home when he was weaned at six months. He was very spoiled when he came to me at 3 three and one half years of age as his first owner took very good care of his physical health but did not do anything much to help him grow up to be a good citizen. Non the less, he is a very kind and willing horse and we had him under saddle by the time he was four. He has proven to be a very steady fellow and is an excellent trail horse, which is my riding discipline.
Unbeknown to be, I was actually using the Waterhole Rituals to teach Chance his life lessons, I just didn’t know about your formal methodology until a friend witnessed our training sessions (with music), our territory ownership and sharing and suggested that I investigate the teachings of Carolyn Resnick and Klaus Hempfling. I was already a big fan of Storm May, Elizabeth Graves, Dominique Barbier and Mark Rashid so your teachings where a natural progression for me. I already have to of your DVDs and have ordered Waterhole Rituals and The Path of the Horse so that I can learn more and be inspired to continue of this path that is seldom followed where I live. My horse friends are very interested though, or maybe more likely curious and they cannot refute the results that Chance and I have attained practicing liberty horseplay, companionship and just plain having lots of fun together. I look forward to learning and sharing more with my gelding as each time I do we open a new door in our relationship

Holly - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
I am new to the WHR and just starting them. But I would like to follow along with the Uberstreichen Exercises so I can start applying them after working through the Rituals. This sounds like exactly what my horse and I need…the centaur connection where the horse wants to stay under you, collection and relaxation–and being able to communicate and break it all down into pieces the horse understands. It sounds fabulous.

I look forward to learning more in the coming weeks.

Michelle Lamphere - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

I have decided that my daughter Deanna and I are not ready to begin with your Uberstreichen exercises but was very excited to see that you will be offering a course with the Waterhole Rituals in the spring. We will watch for that course to be offered. In the meantime, we will continue watching the Waterhole Rituals DVD often and also read posts on your website to keep learning. I am wondering if you will soon be offering a DVD set with Waterhole Ritual instruction? I thought I read that the DVD set would soon be available, but can’t find more information on your website. Thanks so much and I hope you had a wonderful vacation.

Marilyn Duckett - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn and All,

In my first email I neglected to mention my filly’s name, which is Solo. I have been doing some in hand work with her and some ground driving with a surcingle and a bit. She has had a saddle on her back a few times.

I am very much interested in this natural horsemanship method because I believe it concentrates on serious communication with horses on many different levels.

june - 7 years ago Reply

H Caroline thank,s for this wonderful oportunity.

am so excited. 🙂

jeanne - 7 years ago Reply

I had the opportunity to practice the light pull down on the halter to get her head down. She did not show much resistance but I did imagine her head going down lower. After 2 weeks seeing her twice a week I can visualize her head down and she will do it. It’s as if she is watching me!

So simple yet powerful.
thank you!

Rathel Gincig - 7 years ago Reply

signing in for class. Thanks!

Ulrika Rogert Ekholm - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn I REALLy want to participate in this class!
I have three horses 12, 5 and 4 that I try to educate in selfcarriage and balance. Due to a very stupid freak accident I can’t ride for some more months (I fractured my axis vertebrae, simply loosing my balance and falling off the 5 year old in walk 😉
I have lived close to horses all my life but my 12 year old mare Jazz is the one that lead me to more gentle methods by showing me how small and puny I really were;-) I have been training my horses for the last three years by using ONLY positive reinforcement and we have a lovely close working connection. All my horses are drafts or as we say in Sweden coldbloods which means they are very muscular, very intelligent and very apt at using their intelligence to their best. Horses like this you cannot intimidate, you have to prove you are worthy of their attention or you wont have any attention at all;-) Built like tanks they need help to be supple and in control of their bodies so I believe stronly they would benefit from you uberstreichen exersises.
Ulrika Rogert Ekholm Sweden

Rosemary Crowley - 7 years ago Reply

I was away and am late requesting to join your Uberstreichen exercises. I signed up for the Insider program that was cancelled due to winter weather. I have your book and all the dvd’s. I am an equine muscle therapist for the past 17 years and I ride for pleasure and worked at dressage. I now have a 3yo filly TB off the track and my dream horse of all time, a PRE gelding who is 16 mos. I have moved from natural horsemanship and found your blog and am very interested in doing all the right things with my baby and my new filly. Please let me join this class. I will be a good student and keep in contact. Thank you so much for all your wonderful blogs and your books and information.

I tried to just send an e-mail but it would not work. Thank you again for your consideration

Marilyn Duckett - 7 years ago Reply

Carolyn and all,

I would very much like to be considered for this class. I am not familiar with
the WR yet, so I may not be ready.
I have been a horse owner for over 35 years. My first horse (An Appy mare) and I were best friends, I had this special mare for 28 years. She was an alpha mare, and filled in for me when I needed it. I rode her bareback a lot, and we travelled all over the neighborhood and surrounding areas, exploring. Sometimes we would be gone for 4 hours!
Had a break from horses for a few years. I had always wanted a dressage prospect and 1 1/2 years ago, I found a yearling that I fell in love with. She is 2 1/2 now. My filly is an Andalusian/Dutch Warmblood cross, also an alpha mare in the making. She is going through her terrible twos and I feel like I have lost my way some days with her, when she will not listen to me. I did take a natural horsemanship class some years ago, but did not have a horse at the time. I am working to remember what I was taught and to learn everything else that I can. So I got very excited when I found this free course!
Very curious about Uberstreichen Exercises!

Anne P. - 7 years ago Reply

After reading someone’s reply saying that we needed to stand in front, and give pressure until the release, or fake the release and then ask again, I tried it today. My mare has been ‘up’ the last few days as she is being confined in a smaller area of her paddock, (as all the others are too) because of the wet adobe earth,Today I tried this with her before we went to the tack up area, in the tack area, and after riding, and actually also when she was in her bridle. She would drop her head easily, but then when i went to take my hands away, she would raise her head quickly. So I just did it some more and kept my hands on the sides of her halter, and then her bridle. I remembered how much she likes to toss her head when she wants to canter and I haven’t asked yet! Riding went extremely well, no head tossing today while riding, (some displeasure snorting) and she spooked in hand twice, and came back to me in a second. Grazing her went better too, I would just kind of mimic my ask, by a slight tug and release and being next to her we walked slowly back to her pod. MUCH MORE PLEASANT! She did lick and chew after the first ‘real me’ standing at her head and holding on, asking, releasing, and also doing it again after a real head up pull. I can see why doing this for 2 weeks, in different situations would be very beneficial..!! I feel more confident with her, and I think her with me.
Thanks, Anne.

Leanna Kielian - 7 years ago Reply

Carolyn and equestrian friends,
I just had to share a moment that John and I had with Ama the andalusian mare. We needed to treat her the night before last for some small cuts on her fetlock joint and after cleaning the wounds John held out the ointment container for her too smell, a practice we started quite a while ago with all the horses(the others all approve of this product.) She had prior to this moment been very cooperative. She leaned over took one whif and stormed out the stall door. We stood there shaking our heads that we were certainly told her opinion in no uncertain terms. We were trying to decide if she really should have it or let that decision sit, when after a few minutes she returned sniffed the shavings pile and appeared to consider urinating, then walked directly over to us and stood like a rock. We proceeded to apply the ointment and then rewarded her with strokes and cookies. This was a wonderful experience for us because she was a mare that when she arrived didn’t show much emotion or open herself up. I would call her behavior guarded or veiled and if she really didn’t care for something just might “accidently step on your foot.” She has been slowly changing over the 4 years she has been with us and is really showing the depth of her fun personality, as I had described in an earlier post regarding the dressage lessons etc. We are very touched that she was able to offer her cooperation without the use of any restraint and relieved that we could doctor the leg, it made me feel better! This is the same way I am giving our oldest horse his legend injection IV once a month. He makes the choice to stand absolutely still when he is ready although we do use a halter and treats before and after and the words ” I’m sorry, got to do it.” It is very wonderful to be able to work with such generous forgiving animals. This is why I am so excited about doing the Uberstreichen exercises our relationships will only grow deeper. I am really seeing more and more that we generally do not give these beautiful beings enough time to adjust to our activities. I really liked the way you described using the float to assist in helping the horse to drop their head, I think it falls into the allowing the desired response rather than just pressure and release. This is another example of why your programs are so unique, it reminds me of how you decribed your method of how to get a horse to lie down for you. Thank you again for your refreshing insights and sincere dedication to the well being of all horses.

Bonnitta Roy - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
My name is Bonnitta (Bonnie) and I participated in the WHC Box program over the winter. I have a 5 year old Bay stallion ChoCho — I sent you in a video last winter called “small dance” that you posted. I have been working at liberty with ChoCho for four years. Having been a long-distance trail rider all my life, I am now starting to learn some basic dressage. MY approach is both from on the ground and on his back with a snaflle bridle. We are doing some liberty riding to music. Your own love of dressage — the way you speak about it — has been an encouragement to me, because conventional dressage is not appealing to me, due to the methods. I want to base everything I do with my horses on relationship. I just saw your post on the exercises. Like so many of your posts, it has come in a very timely way. I have read your book and watched you DVD’s on the waterhole ritual. Now I need to learn about dressage and the art of riding. I look forward to your instructional posts.

Robyn Bardas - 7 years ago Reply

hi ruella yates,
how on earth did you work out what to do for the first excercise????!!!!!!
i’m kind of hanging out for the first instructions on Thursday,
have i missed something????!!!!!
robyn, NZ

Ruella - 7 years ago Reply

My Paint gelding, Renaissance Painter, and I started the program this afternoon. It was the first time I’ve used a web halter with him; he accepted it willingly, and it seemed he knew what I wanted before I asked. I took the rope in my hand and he lowered his head; then I touched his nose and he tucked a bit. We did it several times with great success. I did it from the front; is that correct? We did some of the Rituals as well; he did “go trot and come back” twice, better than he’s ever done. We had a lovely bridle-less ride in beautiful sunny, cool/crisp weather. I could go on forever about how wonderful he is. Thanks for doing this winter program, Carolyn; it can only make things better for us!
Ruella and Renn

Lisa McCann - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn, I would love to take part in the Uberstreichen Exercises. My name is Lisa and my horse’s name “Matrix”. He came to me 5 years ago as an emaciated 6 yo ex-racehorse. He has an enormous heart and willingness to please, however he also has some of the baggage that ex-racehorses get burdened with. Dressage is my passion and we have started our laterals and looking for more collection now. I’m extremely happy in my arena, but lack confidence on the outside. I know my horse needs variety in his life and I strongly feel that what you have to offer will be invaluable in many areas.
I have been riding for 17 years and have had four riding horses. I still have three, although two are retired. When I first started riding, I was lucky to have been introduced to a wonderful man who saw starting, training, helping horses etc. through very different eyes than most. I spent 10 years following him closely but sadly he passed away. His shoes have been hard to fill and I was so excited when a friend sent me your details. In Australia, we are coming into summer and very hot weather, so I can’t think of a better time to be doing these exersizes.
Matrix is a joy to work with on the ground (and under saddle) and I know he will appreciate the Uberstreichen Exercises as much as I will.
Thank you for sharing your wealth of knowledge.
Warm regards ……… Lisa

Jane Reid - 7 years ago Reply

Hello Carolyn

I would love to join your Uberstreichen exercise program. I participated in The Waterhole Rituals “In the Box” program and my quarter horse Bird and I, loved the experience. It was Marta Williams who suggested your work to me for this horse and it really has been a transformational time for our relationship. Where formerly Bird had been dominant and unconfident he has grown into a willing partner.
Bird is 6 and has only known natural horsemanship. On line he relaxes into long and low, althought I know his weight is too much on the forhand. Currently we are doing a lot of riding with a neck string and he is soft and obliging. Our liberty is great fun and he now has a very positive draw.
I look forward to going to the next level with him.

Sandy - 7 years ago Reply

My passion for horses goes back as far as I can remember. I started riding at the age of 8, tried all the disciplines available as I grew up and increasingly became interested in dressage. I was not born into a horse loving, or wealthy family and had to make the most of what came my way. I often stayed up into the early hours of the morning studying a new training technique or principle that I could later try. In my search for the correct methods, I too shamefully used incorrect and damaging methods on my poor horses.

Fortunately for them I had not been able to follow blindly and conform to what is taught without method or reason and I could not compromise. As my knowledge increased, that proved to be increasingly difficult. Ignorance is bliss to some extent! It is a lonely existence though, but something I have become accustomed to over the years. (I am now 42) My journey led me to a point where I realized that the classical masters held the key to the next chapter in my journey – hence the name of my facility – Xenophon Equus Centre. I am so sad that I only discovered the knowledge and richness in their teachings so late in my life.

On the first of May 2008 I opened my own facilities and started an exclusive livery yard and am living my life long dream of spending all my time with horses. I run the livery yard, teach and train my own and clients’ horses full time and enjoy every moment. I continue to read books, watch DVDs, practice on my horses and learn on my own. I was so impressed with your subtle way of interacting with the horse that I instantly fell in love with your method of training and made it my goal to make contact with you to aquire more knowledge on this method. And I love the fact that you use music as I thought I was the only one to do that !

I’m not interested in the modern competition sphere of horses and sport where the respect for the horse is lost and the riders ego and needs are more often than not the priority. What interests me is having a REAL connection with my horses and the ART of equitation. It would be an honour for me to become part of a process to promote a softer way which would enlighten dedicated horseman in South Africa to an alternative to what has become the norm. A lighter and better way of working and communicating with their horses which will increase the standard of riding and awareness and in the long term only benefit horse and rider. To ride those movements correctly, joyfully and in lightness with a willing partner.

Deb Peterson - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
I have 2 mares, a 18 year old appaloosa, Etta and a 9 year old TWH, Reba.
We have been following Parelli methods the last 3-4 years, and followed along with the WHR this last spring through the “Its About the Horse” forum where some of your students kept us updated on their progress. I did the WHR with both of mine and have seen a better connection because of them. I have owned Etta since 2001, she was shown by my niece and myself in the western and english appaloosa arenas. She is an amazing lovely girl who will do anything for you, but she will definitely be the leader if you are not. I have owned Reba for 2 years now, she is a smart lovely girl who will do anything for a treat! She loves to trail ride, will willingly go anywhere and try anything that comes up on the trail. She see’s no purpose to arena work under saddle, but will do ground work with enthusiasm. I am hoping to learn more about getting both of them to have more connection with me under saddle and hopefully get Reba gaiting more consistently. She is all over with the gaits, and since she is my first gaited horse we are learning as we go!
Thanks for this new adventure!
Sincerely, Deb

MarshaKessler - 7 years ago Reply

I would love to take part in your winter training class. I am older, an intermediate level hunt seat rider, with a green 10 y.o. Morab gelding. I’ve had Asher 5 years now and we have built a good relationship on the ground at liberty and online but I am ready for more and seeking the best deal for both of us. I am just now getting acquainted with the WHR and think they will fill in some of the holes in our relationship. Asher spent one month with a western trainer before coming to me but has had minimal riding since. We are just now getting into it and I am using a very gentle jaquima.

Devony Lehner - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

I read your book a couple of years ago and have used the Waterhole Rituals quite a bit. I have four horses between the ages of 9 and 18, one is blind, and I just adopted him this summer.

I have quite a bit of experience with horses, including 9 years of riding instruction in hunter/jumper and dressage, as well as a certification in equine guided education. But I live in Homer, Alaska, and conditions during winter are not conducive to much work with the horses. The horses live as “natural” a life as I can give them, with a paddock of about 4 acres that includes some fairly dense spruce woods and some wide open areas. I would love to follow the Uberstreichen lessons and hope I am not registering too late. Even if I can do only a few minutes with a horse or two every day or so, we will all enjoy the adventure so much!!

Wilma van Wyngaarden - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn
Thank you for your generosity. I have enjoyed your blog since hearing about you on some Parelli sites.

I got your book and DVD (Intro to WHR) a couple of months ago, have read the book several times, and watched the DVD twice.
I have been studying the art of horsemanship for about a decade and your observations really resonate. You certainly are at the heart of the onion (if one looks at horsemanship as having many many layers like an onion).

I’ve had horses and ponies a good part of my life, (I’m 51) but it never worked very well. Just all came together the last decade when “natural” horsemanship ideas have become available through books and CDs and DVDs. I started studying it because I had got a yearling half-arab (but I think the other half is arab too) and I was way out of my depth.
Well, it has been a very interesting journey.

I still have the arab, now 11, but he is on sabbatical. A friend of mine rides him occasionally, but even she is not always up for the challenge. I always say I had to be on top of my game to ride him. He is a great ride, but a lot of horse.
My other horse is a QH, 7yo mare Tea Jae – I started her using the Parelli program at 3 and we have come a long way as I had some fear problems left over from other horses. We have been doing some collection the last couple of years and she loves it. We are happy riding in a rope halter. She responds to very light cues – at first I thought she was a very dull, heavy horse, but when I lightened my cues, I got a much better response. She is a lovely horse.
I also have a pony mare since about 3 months ago. She was being starved by some people that didn’t know any better. She has a poor opinion of humans.

Anyways, they live in our large pasture/bush area of several hundred acres but always come back and hang around the barnyard in the day time. At night they travel. My brothers say they find horse droppings everywhere in the bush and on the trails.
At the same time the arab and QH are the tamest and kindliest horses I’ve ever had (although they have lived this way since they were yearlings) because of the language I have developed with them. It is mostly Parelli based, but I have also studied Monty Roberts, Chris Irwin, John Lyons and others, then Bill Dorrance, Tom Dorrance and Ray Hunt, also Karen Rohlf (dressage) and now you with your Waterhole Rituals.

I hope this is not too long.

Maureen VanDerStad - 7 years ago Reply

Thank you Carolyn for offering this to us and to our horses. I participated in the recent WRIC Program in a Box and really benefited from it. I have read your book, twice so far and I get something else from it each time I sit with it. I have three horses and a donkey who are kept at home here. I am fortunate to have ample time and space to enjoy them. I ride french classical dressage and have been able to achieve a high level of lightnesss and comunication with my horses. I have had 4 horses of my own so far and three of those horses came into my life because they were shut down, depressed and very unwilling and their owners wanted them gone. Lucky me, the recipient of some great horse deals and incredible horses. I used to teach dressage and horsemanship but took time off from it so I could figure out where and if I wanted to be in the professional horseworld, which I seemed to be drifitng away from. I recently started teaching again to share what I have learned and I have attracted students who are willing to “take the time it takes”. I had a private phone session with you also. I am inspired to take some video of what I’ve been up to with my guys and the WRIC – I wasn’t sure if I should send anything in since I was an in the box. Thanks again.

Carrie Eastman - 7 years ago Reply

My name: Carrie Eastman
My experience: I have been riding and working with horses for 35 years. My background is with hunt seat and open jumpers. I have studied TTEAM and Centered Riding as well. I currently work with horses professionally doing bodywork and nutrition. I have your Waterhole Rituals DVD and have been using the rituals with my horses.
My interest: I always dreamed of a way to partner with horses with respect and love. I’m thrilled to have found you, and am seeing changes in my relationship with my horses using your Waterhole Rituals.
My horse: I share my life with 5 horses. For this, I am working with Lucky. Lucky is a 10 yr Arabian gelding off the track. He has been very skeptical of bonding with people.

linda Kosterman - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,

I’m sorry I’m writing again… Because I dont want to miss.
I wrote ( on page 7) what you wanted to know to start with the Uberstreichen Exercises.
But maby I wasn’t clear enough that I wreally wreally want to join you in the winter program.

Thank you.


Linda Kosterman

Johanne Lang-Davis - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn

Your full name: Johanne Lang-Davis
A brief introduction of your experience with horses : I had horses most of my life riding mostly english showing and later getting involved in dressage. I stopped dressage when the “German Style” became more popular and horses started to look heavier and weight training for the rider seemed to be a prerequisite to hold up the head and forehand. I loved the Nuno Olivera style but had no access to teachers at that time.

I started playing with natural horsemansship and found a whole new way of having a conversation with my horse as opposed to telling. I am hoping to take the communication softness and joy of my natural liberty sessions with my horse and marry them into dressage.

Your interest in my Method – what attracts you to it : I have watched your DVDs and love what you can achieve and know that I can learn a lot from you.
Our history if we have one : None sorry I live in Australia
The name of your horse(s) and his (their) personal training background(s): My main horse is Leo he is a 16hh Quarter Horse who wants to be a warmblood (he hates cows) we play all the time at liberty and have a great relationship. He come running to me as soon as he sees me, as do all my horses, Although I have stables they all live out in herd situations. He is quite dominant but not the top of the pack. He is very very smart and it took me a while to “get this” as he plays games all the time which look like he cant do it whereas he wont do anything unless I ask nicely and make it interesting. I dont ride him at the moment as I feel i need to develop a way to transfer my relationship on the ground to one in the saddle. I am not sure how to do this at the moment.
Look forward to learning more.

Shelley Dunkin - 7 years ago Reply

Carolyn, I thoroughly enjoyed your book!!! You had quite an exciting childhood! I also have your DVD on the waterhole rituals. Your work is fascinating to me and your attitude about nature is precious. I too have been in love with horses as long as I can remember. I have had horses most of my life and spent alot of time riding around like a Native American. I currently have six arabians ranging from three to twenty three. Horses are my passion, my joy and rejuvinators of my soul. I am a level 3 Parelli student and plan on continuing my journey with their program, but I find your waterhole rituals very compelling and I am interested in learning more from you. I do alot of playing with my horses at liberty and have done the waterhole rituals with most of them. Alot of what I’ve been doing for years is very congruent with the waterhole rituals. I have dabbled in dressage, but I decided my horses need more of a solid foundation before I pursue it again which I hope to do soon. I have recently become more aware of the biomechanics of horse movement and am very interested in learning more about exercises to help them become more athletic and prepare them for more collected and precise riding. Thanks for the opportunity.

Tine Meilby Friedrichsen - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,

Thank you for this wonderful opportunity to dive even deeper into the horse/human connection. I have read your book “Naked Liberty” and watched the “Waterhole Rituals” dvd and both offer me valuable guidance on building a relationship based on trust, respect and intuitive knowing with the horses of my life.
I have loved horses all my life and have many years of experience with their training and handling.
A friend of mine owns a handful of icelandic horses and I have the privilege of helping her with their training. Mostly, I spend time with a 13 year old gelding, he is very sweet tempered and polite and a wise leader of his little herd of geldings. I learn a lot from him, especially the importance of being clear in my requests and moving with dignity. Recently, I invited him to compagnon walk with me around the paddocks, how delightful! Unfortunately, his back muscles are a bit underdeveloped perhaps due to an ill fitted saddle at some point in his life, we do not really know, but he is not sore. I hope I can teach him to carry himself (and his rider) in a way that strenghtens his top line.
I read about your book on and was guided to your webside from Stinas site. I find your blog a true source of inspiration, thank you again for sharing!
I look forward to following this program.

Tine (Denmark)

Frank Martinez - 7 years ago Reply

Carolyn, a copy of your “Naked Liberty” book arrived yesterday. And the “Waterhole Rituals” DVD has been ordered earlier this week.
What I would like to recount is that this morning I chose to start the book sitting in one of my horse’s two paddocks, at the open gate between them. At first he was reluctant to approach as he often is. But eventually he did. We’ve been sharing territory for about two weeks on a daily basis. Often he will visit where my chair is, occupied or not, but just as often only for several minutes. Today, for whatever reason, he elected to stay at my right shoulder for approximately an hour; his head in the same direction as mine, while I read everything up to Chapter One, and the Epilogue(for a hint, in a sense, as to what might be expected). The only sounds were page-turning and birds. You need to know that this has not happened in the past regardless of what we were doing! I found his action to be very rewarding and most uplifting. It happened without treats or ‘bribes’ of any sort. It pleased me tremendously! This prompts me to add that it’s very gratifying to have found a method of horsemanship that brings horse and man so close because of free choosing.
My horse is called Gitano, Spanish for Gypsy, pronounced “Hee-tah-noh”. He is an 8 year old BLM Mustang adopted 5 years ago.

joncy muselwhite - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn, I would very much like to join you in the winter program. I think you do a wonderful job with horses and i love them as well. I have trained and rode horses for about 12 yrs now and you can always learn something new. I have a 3yr old appaloosa i trained from 1yr old and he’s a good gentle horse. I have done all my round pen and ground work, and would like to take him farther. I go out every other day and spend time in the pasture with him and even take him on long walks to graze outside the pasture. I think you are doing a great deed with horses and horse people and i would very much like to join you in this program. Thanks again Joncy.

Nan Pantle - 7 years ago Reply

Nan Pantle

Dear Caroline:

I have been so moved by your generosity as I have followed your blog since February a year ago.

I have little formal experience with horses. When a girl, the neighbor children were terrified of their pet ponies. I was invited to play and care for them as I wished. As the little Shetland mare hated saddles, I learned to ride bareback. Somehow—with no instruction—we started her colt when he grew to 2. Then came volunteering at age 52 on a private rescue farm 2 years ago of a woman who had 26 Premarin mares and offspring and no one to help. They were mostly untouchable. My husband and I vowed no horses, but what can I say, we were adopted (Especially when no one seemed to desire horses with no handling). The two mares (and one unsuspected filly in utero) transformed our lives, where we lived, what we cared about, became our family. The last 3 years I have tried to read everything I could on natural horsemanship to help them. I took riding lessons to try to regain my seat, to know more beyond Go, Whoa, and reins left and right. Our journey has been slow here, only one mare green under saddle. But I have learned much about ground work as have these mares and the filly. They are gentle and lovely.

I was stunned by so many methods available to train horses, myself uninitiated. Then I stumbled onto your website, your clips on You-Tube and those of your students. I was delighted to find somewhere to learn more than simple pressure and release, dominance and follower. Your way was not just about a means to “use” the horse. It was a way to begin to honor the spirit and self of my horses, as I would wish my own to honored.

I have listened to your interviews on the internet, and have also Panadero’s Journey and the first Waterhole Rituals on DVD from you. I have read the archives on your blog and so look forward to each week’s writings. I spend much time with my horses in the fields, sometimes even at the night when their markings glow in moonlight. We have not used your methods in step-wise fashion but as the opportunities arise when we share the days. I thought mirroring would never happen for us. Then suddenly all were doing it, following movements, speed, directions, halting when I halted. I am so excited for the DVDs to follow this year and next. Thank you for helping us all move onward.

I hope to work in depth with two of ours. Stella is a 5-year-old quarterhorse mare who taught me not to make judgements about horses. When I met her she was aloof. I thought her unreachable. But now she is open and has such a quick intelligence, a keenness to learn.

Johnny is a 5-year-old quarterhorse rescue, a grey gelding, we brought here last November from the same rescue farm when hay money ran out there. He had simply run all those years, unhandled. He lacked self-confidence, was run-off feed by the herd, carried himself poorly, but seemed to have such a desire beneath it all to connect with people. I have given him this year to grow that confidence, to learn touch and groundwork. He is so soft and at first seemed overly sensitive, so that every interaction was met with fear or confusion. But he is lovely now, moving by my side even about cones at liberty.

The two will never be dressage or show horses. But I want to grow in our relationship further now, explore new ways to open to one another. I also have need for them be able to earn a place in the human world—reliable under saddle—should something befall me.

I hope you will consider me for your program this fall into winter. (I accidentally wrote the first day to the “contact site” rather than in the “comments” section).

Blessings and many thanks,
Nan Pantle.

Miriam Morrison - 7 years ago Reply

Greetings, Carolyn,

My name is Miriam Morrison and I would love to participate in your online class to learn the Uberstreichen Exercises. I, like many of your students, have a childhood history with horses. Then at college age the rules of the world overcame me and I had to put horses aside for over 30 years. A bit over five years ago I rediscovered the joy of horses. I’ve had no formal riding instruction – a few pointers here and there, mostly teaching myself by experience, observation and reading. Since returning to horses, I’ve studied natural horsemanship, attended a couple of Parelli conferences. I thoroughly enjoyed your book, Naked Liberty, and watched your dvd “Waterhole Rituals”. I desire to continue improving the bond and communication with my beautiful mare, Dolly.

Dolly was a never-mounted, gently ground trained three year old when I met her. She is a Clydesdale/Morgan cross. Love at first sight, I bought her and thought I would send her to a trainer. That never happened. We’ve grown in our horse-human partnership over the past 5 years. I’ve mostly ridden her with a bareback pad and a hackamore halter enjoying many happy hours gently trail riding trails in the fields and woods near where we live. Dolly is a dominant and intelligent gal with a mind of her own. I like to think of myself that way too! We enjoy each others company. Dolly has good ground manners, stands quietly for grooming and fly spraying; is polite with her feet and moves forward at request, walks by my side and halts without necessity of the rope.

We have practiced the Parelli’s games with some success, and are now confident in our mutual trust and ready to move through dominance games to leadership love.

Please include Dolly and me in your class to learn the Uberstreichen Exercises.
Thank you.

sally spencer - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Again Caroline
I forgot to say what attracted me to your work.
Well I have purchased and watched your dvds, and have kept up with your blogs.
I love your sincerity and integrity.
I both appreciate and respect the work you do with your horses and the connection you are working to help people attain with their horses.
Thanks Sal

Leanna Kielian - 7 years ago Reply


I didn’t not mention earlier about how I first learned of your method in Riding magazine and ordered your dancing with horses video and Naked liberty at that time, which I devoured. It really helped guide me to feel more at ease watching, interacting and observing my little herd beyond just riding. One often gets questioned why they are walking a horse down a trail rather than riding or why keep an unridable horse. Your students understand the value of having a complex relationship with a horse and that the relationship does not need to exist solely to gleen performance in the arena. I really, really enjoy reading the profiles of each and every student because each has such a good story and something to learn from and that we are not alone on this equine guided quest. At the time of ordering the first materials from you we had spoken on the phone briefly and I was really touched by your sincere desire that I “get it” using the rituals, allowing the horses choice to participate and if they left for me to leave them. It was and still is very refreshing to hear your energy, care and concern for each student and horse. The more time I have spent with the horses the more I realize how much they are communicating to us, if we will only listen. My husband, I, and the horses here are all the better for it and even while others may not follow your methods our examples of caring, listening and efforts to truly understand and bond with these wonderful equine spirits is contagious and is not being missed by others. The joy of the horses and our joy speaks more powerful than any ribbons over time. I continue to pour over the DVD’s, the videos and repeat the taped conference calls learning something new each round. But the real results have truly been based in the time spent in the barn exploring what I have learned. My 2 year old filly was so off the path of what I had envisioned for our relationship after her health issues I was told to do terrible things to prevent her from killing someone, but she wasn’t mean she was in physical pain, protecting herself moving into the danger. She is becomming the most polite sweet cheerful participant and good citizen and what has it taken little bits of short time after the sitting etc. Her manners are setting new standards for the other already wonderful and easy to handle horses. Again I wrote more than I intended but it is from the heart. I so much enjoy your blogs. Observing the eyes blog is a perfect example of what so many “trainers” fail to teach their students and how when horses voices are ignored they become exploited despite caring individuals.

Virginia Bassetti - 7 years ago Reply

I am so excited about this! What a wonderful idea for winter.

I have been using your method for 2 years now. I have 5 horses…Quarter Horses, Morgan, Paint and a Miniature. A few of my horses are retired National & Regional Champions and the others are happy trail horses. My experinece is in Stockseat, Hunseat, Driving, Trail, Shomanship..etc…. I feel this method is wonderful for all of my horses and bridges the gap between their knoledge levels also. Its so fun!!

So much more fun than the last 18 years of working with horses with the “less fun” methods. Its truly given myself and my horses a rebirth. I have also attracted a few friends who know & love your method and follow it. I have participated in 2 of your “Self Realizaion” classes which were life changing !!!

I cant express in words the impact you have had on my life and my animals lives. Bing a part of a truly authentic method is so inspiring and I look foward to being a part of spreading this knoledge to the world !

Thank you for all that you do and I am excited to more deeply understand these exersizes this winter.

Sue Elwyn - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
I first had a horse (Rebel )when I was a teenager, we did lots of trail riding alone and with friends.When I graduated from high school and left home my younger sister stepped into my shoes. He was a wonderful guy and I have many great memories.
I didn’t have horses in my life again until my 30’s, and I have had horses ever since then- I’m an AARP member now with 3 horses and there is one that brought me to your Method.

He was a spooky, untrusting blue roan Appy gelding that I thought with some ground work and riding on a regular routine would come around . What I didn’t realize was he’d rather hang with horses and didn’t really want to connect to people like I was asking him to do. I tried natural horsemanship, other proven methods of ground work that worked well with my other horses, they all had some good effects with him though it was always a struggle at the begining for both of us , plus I felt like I was always asking something of him.

I started the Waterhole Rituals this past summer after a friends suggestion, after just a few times of going thru the rituals as far as we could get that session/day. It started to be fun for both of us and (my light bulb moment ) we were actually having a conversation . Horsey style .
My Appy gelding has settled in and is spooking less & less. We have the start of a solid foundation of trust & connection. He now hangs around me when he could go off into the pasture with the other horses. His eye has changed from hard & small to soft large pools which makes me smile.
I also feel more grounded in myself doing theses rituals.

I now can layer the other training methods, he is ready to try.
I’m very interested in the uberstrieken exercises and look forward to this winter seminar. Thank you for doing it.
My horses name is Hakuba and he is green broke , I’m not sure of the training method that was used to start him undersaddle.

Juergen Rust - 7 years ago Reply

Hello, Carolyn,
I would love to take part in your “Ueberstreichen” Exercises. You have my name on the list of this years “Box” program students and you have just returned my payment for the new Insider Circle Program, which you have just postponed to the spring.
My riding history I sent to you in my introduction to the “Box” program. I started about 55 years ago after I had managed to convince my mother that I was serious. It started in a small riding school in southern Germany. After a few years we kids were sent to participate at all horse shows in the area. Since trailering was unknown to us we rode to the shows and stayed over night at farms in the area.
As a student I was later sent by the Munich Student’s Riding Association to the Westfaelian Riding and Driving School for intermediate Dressage, Jumping and Driving (4 in hand). I spent two summers there.
In 1967 I came to Canada, where I still live and work as an Architect with my own office. We now live on a 100 acre farm 2 hours north of Toronto. Since I am only three days in my City office I enjoy the other four days at home. There, we have a Polish Warmblood (out of the old Trakehner breeding). “Pagan” is now 24 years old, but both of us feel easily 20 years younger. Unfortunately I had to board him at various stables for 8 years until we got the property and I built a stable and brought him home. He has a companion horse, a 15 yo Standardbred gelding, I adopted this summer. Since the beginning of the month we have boarder, a 2yo Irish Draft horse mare (baby), who is being educated by the two geldings.
Apart from a 50′ round pen with deep sand footing we have now a rectangular exterior arena (80′ x 200′) with grass footing (in summer).
Pagan was in there with me at liberty last Sunday, but was very exited since he smelled danger coming form the ravine behind. We have a number of coyotes living there. However, after about an hour he calmed down somewhat and came over to me from behind and touched me.
Companion walking works perfectly some days, but on other days he finds more interesting things to do. He even pretends finding still a few blades of grass, which are more important at that moment than I am. Since I just got the arena finished last week I was not able to do the Watrerholr Rituals with him, but I am very much looking forward to it. In my previous summary I told you how I found you on the net , looking for a more rewarding horse/human relationship. I love your n”Naked Liberty” and had to buy it again after the first copy went to a friend of mine, one of the last great old Dressage Masters, as a birthday present.
Thank you,

Judith Pobjecky - 7 years ago Reply

I am very interested in doing the 09-10 Winter Training Program. I did not see where I need to sign up. Please let me know.

I am a late-comer to having a horse. My horse, Shiloh, and I have been together now for five years. He is a black Tennessee Walking Horse, great disposition and such loyalty. He loves to learn and I feel the program you’re offering will be great for both of us. He was a show horse; I took the big shoes off and just have a wonderful companion.

Thanks so much for your wonderful example in learning to live in the world of the horse.

Judi Pobjecky

Gina Morro - 7 years ago Reply

Carolyn, I am thrilled that you are extending yourself to afford us this amazing opportunity. Your work has had a profound impact on my relationship with my 8 yr old horse Cruiser. Cruiser was purchased as a troubled unstarted 7 yr old. He has come an amazing distance in a rather short time (18 months) and we now enjoy a relationship of mutual respect and understanding. It is not all perfect and I am thrilled to continue the learning journey to be a better leader for this guy. My other four also acknowledged my new skills as I worked through the waterhole rituals with each. Life has changed around here for the better! I still giggle at feeding time when I recall the silly frenzy I used to endure. I recall writing to you in amazement when I first noticed that the eat noises had changed after the first two rituals.

Máire Kennedy - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

I am just adding to my comment (at no. 64 below) in that I did not explain what attracts me to your method. When I first came across them, it was the name: Waterhole Rituals. It conveyed a sense of order and manners and more than that: a shared knowledge, a ceremony. The first ritual sounds so simple and is so profound. For me it awakens my own sense of presence in the landscape with my horses. I also like that the horses are at liberty and so have choice; this is so rare. Even in the kindest, most humane of riding establishments, choice in interactions with humans is rarely present. I think there is huge depth in the rituals and fresh learning every time.

I am in Ireland, by the way. Lots of rain and mud here. Besides Ben, I have an elderly pony called Rosie who is the most incredibly expressive little lady.

Best wishes,


Tracy Litle - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
Although I have never posted on your blog I haven’t missed reading any of your posts. I began reading your site after hearing your radio interview Anna Twinney. After listening to the episodes describing the waterhole rituals I purchased your book, Naked Liberty, read it (twice) and later ordered the Waterhole Rituals DVD. I was searching for a deeper way to connect with one of my horses, Maddie. I bought her 4 years ago as a 3 year old started in western pleasure and reining. A year later we began Parelli and are currently at Level 3. Maddie’s very obliging but I sense a lack of desire to be with humans in her. She really has no use for most of us when given a choice. Perhaps it was past training methods or my lack of ability of reading her. The rituals have given us a way to connect that I did not have before. They also have helped me to understand her and I have become more sensitive to what she is telling me. I am very interested in the Uberstrieken Exercises as they will further continue the groundwork that is necessary for the lightness and level of communication for which I am striving. I would be honored to be a part of this program.

Jan Laware - 7 years ago Reply

My name is Jan Laware. I have been with horses all my life from age 6. No one else in my family was “horsey” so I began my road to discovery by myself. I taught myself to ride and I had to figure out how to get my horse to what I wanted knowing she was much bigger than myself. Over the years I have had the pleasure of owning and training a number of horses. I have shown pleasure classes in the past. I am familiar with the Uberstreichen Exercises under saddle as I also ride dressage.

I have been following your blog for about six months now and working on the sharing and companion work with my 7 yo TB mare. Her name is Meadow Money and was bred to race but never did. We are doing very well with the first rituals. As a matter of fact just today when I went out to the barn I found that she had a burr in her ear. I know it hurt when I touched it but not once did she really fight me. I managed to get it out very quickly. I doubt that I could have done it without the work I have done with her. She was out in pasture when I did this and now always comes to say hello to me. I was really thrilled she let me take care of this.

I have just ordered the intro to waterhole rituals and am impatiently waiting its arrival. I look forward to learning all I can from your blog. I think your method is wonderful.

Jan Laware

Marja van Run - 7 years ago Reply

I would love to participate in your Überstreichen lessons Carolyn; here’s an introduction of me and my horses:

My full name:
Marja van Run (from the Netherlands)

My experience with horses:
I started riding in a riding school when I was 12 (I am 48 now). When I was 29 I bought my first Icelandic mare and it became obvious that my riding school experience didn’t bring me very far. In the following years I made many, many mistakes, mostly due to my impatience and my lack of really understanding horses. But over the years my horses became my teachers more and more. I still make mistakes, of course, but the big difference is that I now know that my horses are always right and that I’m the one who has to learn to understand them. Due to several circumstances I had a two year period of not riding at all, but strangely enough I learned more about horses and riding in this period than I ever did before, by ‘processing’ all my earlier experiences in my head, and reading, observing and thinking a lot. In this period I found your method and your blog, read your book, watched your DVD and realized that this was what I was looking for.
We keep our herd of meanwhile seven Icelandics in Paddock Paradise and I love seeing them, taking care of them and just being with them. They are my great teachers in life!

My interest in your method:
What I find most interesting about your method is learning how to be and work with a horse in a way that makes him want to be with me and please me out of his own free will. I wouldn’t want it any other way. It can still be frustrating sometimes to see my own impatience mirrored in my horses, but at the same time it is wonderful to let them show me their way and learn from them.

Our history:
We never met or talked in person. The ‘only’ connection we have is that I admire your method and your wonderful way with horses. I made a small contribution to help spreading your message around the world by making the Dutch subtitles for your Waterhole Rituals DVD.

My horses:
The horses I work with most frequently at this moment are Saegola and Kría, both six year old Icelandic mares. I train them bitless, because they both made it clear to me that they dislike bits. They respond very lightly to the bitless bridle.
With Saegola I go very slowly, because I have the feeling she needs a lot of time. As an 8 months old foal her right hind leg got very badly injured by wire, cutting her tendons. She recovered remarkably well, but had an issue with picking up her legs for a long time. We resolved this with a lot of patience. Saegola is sensitive and intelligent, but can get a bit impatient and hectic sometimes. When I started training her last year she was quote introvert and stubborn, but she has wonderfully opened up to me and we have a nice trusting bond now. I do in-hand and liberty work with her and she is a little bit under saddle now.
Kría is well under saddle now. She has great charisma, a big ego and strong leading qualities (when she was three years old she was the leading mare in a herd of sixteen young mares) and I always must consider this when training her. When she feels I respect her, she’s very sweet and willing to do anything. But when she doesn’t feel respected enough, you can easily get into a fight with her.
Both mares are very affectionate, curious, they love company, and are great to work with. They both have good ground matters and a nice working attitude.

D. Rosalie Nyback - 7 years ago Reply

Hi, I just read about your offer, the Uberstreichen excerises and I would love to participate. I have had a gilding, named Sundancer for about 4 1/2 years now, a standardbred, rescue he did not qualify for the track and was only tested twice, each time he laid down in refusal. My draughter and I found him, she lost interest. So began our journey, I work with him on the ground one day I’ll learn to ride. I had a western trainer on him first for awhile undersaddle. Some N.H. I found out about you a few years ago and probably read your book a few times. He had a month on him with another trainer couple years ago. Then about 1 1/2 years ago I found a young girl who worked with him (moved him close to a park) and she took him out, rode him in a halter and taught him some lightness and collection, as she is studying an old French style (pre- german military). That was not always easy and required consistancy, easy not because, he needed to develope the muscles and intially, I suppose had delevloped racing muscles, moving forward and hobbled to pace. I was pretty green starting out and still learning. I read about you in a alernative horse magazine and even phone you about the video, you advised me to read the book 1st. and then the video and gave me a couple of pointers. Thanks for that, my horse can be insecure sometimes, but he is dominate and intelligent and I always need to think and feel leadership. I’m going to be moving him in a month maybe two. He’s on stall rest with a small turn out (in & out). I’m always trying to engage him, and have fun with him when I move he will be closer for self board. So can see him every day. And it’s next to trails etc. But we will take it slow to begin with, he likes it where he is, but I can’t afford it anymore. I think we’re good canditates for your excerises. I hope you will think so to, sincerely Ro By the way I’m 59 and take things slow.

inge - 7 years ago Reply

taken over from section the not so great escape
Carolyn Resnick Says:
November 17th, 2009 at 11:24 am

Dear Inge,
Just write your full name in the comments section its self if you have not already.

you mean over here???

my full name inge van der Woude

Karen Clouston - 7 years ago Reply


I thought I should add a little information on Tam’s readiness for the Uberstreichen Exercises.

Although I got the Waterhole Ritchewals dvd, I never formally did all the exercises because I felt that we were already at an equivalent level in our relationship. However, I reviewed the dvd again (actually three times) and went out to test whether or not he and I could do all the ritchewals. He did! The only sticky one was the Taking Territory. It took some doing for him to give up the food and follow me instead. But we did it, and he was fine with it. I will work on that one a wee bit more to confirm it.

We have done a lot of work with the cordeo and he gives his poll already with only a hint of a request, even from my body language alone. I ride with a light jumping cavesson (side pull type) and rein contact is not really necessary. He is well balanced and he carries himself well. In riding his only issue is my riding, which I’m working on all the time. Less is more with him. We’re getting there.

Despite all his willingness, balance, composure and self carriage I’m learning that even the calmest horse may carry some tension that may inhibit some aspects of training, so what I’m hoping is that the Uberstreichen Exercises not only help with this, but also help to train myself to see and relieve underlying, less obvious tensions.

Tina Cobb - 7 years ago Reply

Your full name : Tina Cobb

A brief introduction of your experience with horses : I got my first horse as an adult and, now at 63, am sharing my life with the 8th horse. My great passion is trail riding but I’ve dabbled in many disciplines, including cutting, 3 Day Eventing, and Arab breed shows. I didn’t excell at anything but I had a lot of fun and I think my horses did, too.

Your interest in my Method – what attracts you to it : From my very first sight of my very first horse, I was wasn’t comfortable with the “common” or “traditional” methods of horse handling. I’ve always felt I was obligated to spend part of our time together doing something the horse liked – like grazing or sight seeing in the ranch areas the horse didn’t have access to. As recent as a few days ago, my instructor questioned my letting my horse stop during our warm-up before a lesson to stare off into the distance. She said that for 1 hour a day, he should do exactly what I want…which led me to the most amazing realization that THAT was exactly what I did want. I wanted to spend those first few minutes just being with Seguro and seeing our surroundings through his eyes. From what I’ve been reading on your blog, I think your approach may be compatible.

Our history if we have one : None. I found your blog because a friend of mine was scheduled to take a lesson with a local instructor in your method. She never went to the lesson but I kept reading your blog.

The name of your horse(s) and his (their) personal training background : Seguro is so very, very different from my previous horses. Some things, like leading and trailering, have taken him years to master; others, like carrying cones or standing on the pedestal, he accomplished in minutes. He’s had some lameness issues which are finally near to resolution. He’s 8 years old and, this summer, we started going out on group trail rides. Last month, he began leading part of the way. My goal is to be able to safely and happily ride him alone in our beautiful parks. I love him with all my heart and visit him at the boarding stable every day.

Lynn Elston - 7 years ago Reply

I began my journey with horses 18 years ago, as an over 40 adult. Have done many things in my life, but nothing has been so difficult and so entrancing, as trying to stay on the back of one of these wondrous beats and share their movement. After 5 years of various lessons…Western, dressage…none of which helped me lose my clutching fear when the horse went faster than I’d asked, I discovered “Natural Horsemanship” and spent a joyous year on the ground, learning to move my horse rather than him move me. From there, I discovered Centered Riding and an instructor who helped me realize that riding was about me, not the horse. 6 years ago, I became a centered Riding instructor and I now teach adult beginners on my safe, sound horses…so that they, too, can learn about themselves. I continue my journey with my three horses and your Method, Carolyn, has brought us so much mutual understanding of each other!

I have a small, 7 acre farm for the geldings. Bud is 37 and amazingly hearty. Pilgrim was my first horse, an Arab/QH, who is now 23 with the beginnings of Cushings. He is responding to drugs and still likes to dance with me.

Moon is my main squeeze, an 18 year old Paint gelding. He was a team roping horse when I got him 6 years ago…with more Whoa than Go. He learned liberty pretty quickly, but never really seemed to enjoy any of the interaction. That’s when I began using the Water Hole Rituals and, oh my, what different horse he is now!! His favorite thing is to come get me on the mounting block and pack me around the arena…he always gets to choose whether he wants to do it..and, since that’s the case, he almost always does! Such a difference. We ride backyard dressage together, both of us learning how best to use our bodies in communication with each other.

So, Moon is the one I will be trying your Winter teachings with, and with Pilgrim secondarily.

I am looking forward to learning this.

Thank you for the opportunity.
Lynn and Moon

Kerrie Stepnick - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

My horse Capricho and I were in your last Waterhole in a Box program.

I had a background in western pleasure, reining, barrels and such events as well as just riding in the hills all day long. After a 37 year hiatus from horses, I re-entered their world last January when we got two rescue horses including the gelding above. He now is neck reining and riding well under saddle. But best of all, thanks to the Waterhole Rituals, we dance together quite happily – he will walk, trot, circle, back up, send away and come back, all entirely at liberty. He is learning to mimic my movements very well and has become a dear friend.

Looking forward to learning more about these exercises!

deborah johnson - 7 years ago Reply

Hey Carolyn, I did respond to your last email, and Tessa suggested that I post here. Yes, please! Would love to be included in the “Uber” exercises! This is Deborah, and Eclipse and I participated in your insiders circle clinic you held this summer. We are doing great, have moved on into the saddle, as you know.
I started Eclipse in a bitless bridle, as I am so worried about any kind of abuse to her mouth. She ran through it, I disengaged her, but her only thought was to return to her pasture. I then went to a french link snaffle, and she was a lot better, but still was very barn sour. I started trailering her to my friends barn, using her arena, and started working on our relationship. You know all about that, and I’m happy how things are going, but still not happy about the bit. This is where I have so many questions, and it seems you might have some answers.
Otherwise, our relationship is amazing. My very aloof horse has turned into a lovely, affectionate partner. Hawk has gone from scary, to obedient and loving liberty. Bitty has opened up to the possibility that there might be one human that she likes and trusts.
So YES YES YES, please include us in your program and look forward to sharing our experiences. Hope to send some good utubes, as Tony will be home to help video. Can’t wait!!!!!!!!!!
Happy Thanksgiving Carolyn, Tessa, and all the horses!

Jeanette Correia - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

It’s late and I hope that I didn’t miss the deadline!

As you know, I am eternally grateful to you for the knowledge that I received from your genius mind for the past 6 years. What I have learned from you changed my life and how my horses relate to me. My horses have always liked me, but they now respect me as their leader. I once was fearful and felt intimidation, but then peace set-in, and the relationships I share with my 4 horses continue to grow in ways that I never thought possible.

I’m excited about having the opportunity to participate in the Uberstreichen Exercises program that you are offering and look forward to discover the many ways in which my horses and I will benefit.

Thank you for giving us the Waterhole Rituals and sharing your incredible talent!

Carol LaCorte - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

I’m looking forward to learning more about your Uberstreichen exercises as I’ve seen first hand how they can almost immediately change a horse’s attitude for the better. I’ve learned a lot and come a very long way with my mustang Banner over the summer while participating in your Insider’s Circle program, and am anxious to continue strengthening our bond through the use of these exercises.

Thanks so much for all you do. –Carol

Lori - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn!

I (and my horse of course!) would like to register for this class! Alger and I will both be working our way through school now! These have been such helpful exercises over the years and I have been very priveledged to have you as my coach. Looking forward to this class.



Barbara Cole - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
I am your friend for life, as well as your fan, devotee and admirer (I, who admire nobody except Mr. Ed and my own horse — you are the only human exception besides Einstein and Hawking) — Barbara. My horse, 16.2h (maybe growing!) five 1/2 yr old gelding, Oscar and I have used the WHRs to his and my mutual happiness. As a novice middle-aged formerly traumatized rider, Oscar takes impeccable care of me, treating me like spun glass — and patiently waits for me to begin to touch his potential, which is endless. He appears to be this calm, almost lazy Friesian but if you ever see him ‘strut his stuff’ his exquisite breeding, self carriage, pride, athleticism and showy talent comes out and there you see that he is really an Olympian disguised as this Baby Huey-esque sweet, young, elephant-sized fuzzy friend with long batting eyelashes. Everyone thinks that he just came to me this way. They have no idea the disrespect, the testing, the cunning ‘stupid act’ he would put on, the high energy, spookiness and body slamming this boy had when I first bought him, only eight months ago. I tell them about the WHRs and about you and these poor innocent, well-meaning cowboys and cowgirls persist in their belief that “I just got lucky” with Oscar. So then, right before all of them, I have begun using WHRs on Hessel, a 16hh 7 yr old gelding, who only two weeks ago, threw my well-known, competent trainer to the ground in an acting out fit against too much old style horsemanship. I hadn’t even gotten past sharing territory and leading from behind before Hessel willingly gave me companion walking and anything else I ask through my emotions and the faintest of body language and intention. NOW THOSE COWBOYS AND COWGIRLS are watching!!! So yes, please sign me up for the “U” exercises. The best way to change the world is one living example at a time. I know my horse will appreciate me catching up to him just a bit more, too. And my appreciation for what you have done for horses and for me personally renders me speechless and with a full heart.

Lylie Ryder - 7 years ago Reply

Hello Carolyn,

I was made aware of your website from Dressage Disgrace and am very interested in your Uberstreichen Exercises.

I am 53 years old. rode in my 20’s, stopped, and then started riding again about 5 years ago with emphasis on dressage. My mare is a 6 year old Canadian which I purchased as a 3 year old. She was started at four with a trainer and I have continued in her training ever since. My biggest concern is that we are not developing the lightness in the bridle that I think we should have and I am hoping that working from the ground will help my communication with her.

I am at present not working with a coach but am hoping to start sometime in Dec. taking lessons with someone who trains with Walter Zettel.

Hopefully I will be able to put your exercises to good use.

Thank You

Karin Kozlowski - 7 years ago Reply


First let me say that I am in awe of your approach to working with horses; I would give just about anything to apprentice with you, although that will probably never be a possibility since I am not an advanced rider.

That said, Roscoe and I have benefitted from your method (I study your book, Naked Liberty, and your Waterhole Rituals DVD. I was disappointed when you cancelled the Winter Waterhole online classes, and I can only hope that you do them in the Spring. Please!

I believe that the Waterhole Rituals classes are an important element for successful participation in your Uberstreichen Exercises. Still I hope that the work that Roscoe and I have done so far will enable us to incorporate the Uberstreichen Exercises.

Roscoe is a six-year old Tennessee Walker. He and I have been together for two years now. He is my first horse. When I purchased him he was being ridden with a curb bit. We started learning Parelli together. I used a snaffle bit but then removed that and am riding only in a halter. I did this because I knew that I did not have an independent seat yet and that I would inadvertently pull on his mouth. Once I get that, I will work with a bit as my skills improve. However, one of my goals is to be able to ride him bridleless.

As I said, we embarked on the Parelli method together. But there was a lot of resistance and braceyness. And boy did he hate that carrot stick; he wasn’t afraid of it; he just resented it. He did a lot of nipping and biting. But one day he really bit me hard, even drawing a little blood. I refer to that day as my wake up call. I knew that I had to rethink everything. It’s about that time that I discovered you. It became clear that I didn’t have the bond that we needed and that I wasn’t speaking his language and that we needed to build that before we could progress with any more Parelli. Well, we have made great progress through the rituals. He’s in a 20 acre pasture, and all I have to do is whistle and call his name for him to come to me. We can do a lot at liberty, but it needs more work because the connection is not always consistently there. Still, I hope that we are advanced enough to benefit from the Uberstreichen Exercises. According to the criteria that you mention above concerning whether a horse is ready for the exercises, I believe Roscoe is. So, count me in. How exciting!


Dorohty Straw - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,
My name is Dorothy and I took your wonderful “In a Box”,Waterhole Rituals Insider Circle course.I live in Ireland and at present have nine horses and ponies in my care,most of them are rescues.What I have learnt from you regarding the culture of horses has completely changed my life and that of my horses.I had observed a lot of the rituals taking place within the herd but had not grasped their true meaning,even though some of the rituals I had instinctively used like sharing territory,leading from behind and even companion walking had often occurred,without my realising the significance of it.I actually don’t expect or want a particular performance from my horses but I realise that some of them are going to out live me and my circumstances could change at anytime.So to be fair to them, they must be prepared for any demands that future owners may place upon them.So I feel it would be very beneficial for me and four of my horses to learn these exercises so that they will be prepared for any future performance expectations.Their names are Coco,Bob,Ruby and Sox the rest of the herd are either too small or too old to be expected to perform or be ridden.
Kind regards Dorothy.

jeanne endo - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
My kids have horses but I never had a horse of my own. There is a horse at my kids barn that I have been practicing the Waterhole Rituals with. She has not been ridden in years but has nice ground manners so I feel safe being on the ground with her. I feel as if she trusts me but we need more.
I was introduced to by two friends. One friend took her mare to Santa Rosa where she learned about the WR by one of your instructors. I have read your book and watched your DVDs.
Looking forward,

Dona Bhavani - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn. I found you online, bought and listened several times to your deeply moving “Naked Liberty”, have 2 of your dvds (“Waterhole Rituals” and “Panadero”) and have started implementing the exercises. My background is, starting from early childhood, being a horse crazy little girl who would play with my model ‘Black Beauties’ and ride my bouncy horse for hours. Until the age of 4 we lived out in the country with steers and horses. I would hang out with them while they grazed and sometimes my mom would take me around on the horse’s back. Later on, from about age 7 I took riding lessons, basic hunter/jumper, from a retired calvary officer for 3-4 years. Now, I recall his personal horse was beautifully collected and he must of known dressage, but he didn’t teach it to us. There were also lovely trails through the woods we would ride (in Potomac, MD). Due to family upheaval all that was put aside and I didn’t get back to horses again until I was 40 yrs. old. During a meditation retreat I had a dream about a horse who lived in my home (I think it meant a horse I felt at home with). I knew it was now or never and talked my then partner into each of us getting a horse and riding together. I looked at many horses, and one, a lovely 3 yr. old arabian, touched my heart like no other. We learned beginning dressage together for about a year, and then lots of trails and off-trails for 16 years. He was very spooky, but I came to understand he was just afraid and had a gentle loving heart. We developed mutual trust and really became telepathic for the last 8 years of his life. When I rode him I felt like my legs were wrapped around pure love, with the strength and stamina to take me on adventures I could never have had without him. It got so I would just think something and give a tiny weight shift and he would do it. One day he gave me a beautiful slow collected rocking-horse canter. I praised him profusely for it, and after that he would give it to me whenever I asked him for a ‘pretty canter’. I got so trusting and fearless on him, we would go for hours alone on the open space, run on the reservoir beach jumping fallen trees, loop back around for a long ride on the shoulder of the road and back into the open space. We did most of our dressage off the trails – figure 8’s and serpentines around the yucca plants, then cantering up and down the foothills and around plant obstacles like a roller coaster. We would both get excited when we got to these familiar areas – he would take off for the obstacle course at a brisk canter, with me laughing out loud for joy. There was a hill we liked to gallop up to the top, stop and enjoy the panoramic view. He would turn and love-nibble my toes while we rested. He got colic and died when he was 19. It ripped my heart out to see him suffering like that. I grieved his loss deeply, but feel so grateful to have had him in my life. I felt such a deep bond with him. And yet, when I listened to your stories in “Naked Liberty” I learned how much even deeper the bonding can be. With rapture and tears I listened to your fabulous, wondrous life with horses. That’s really what brought me here, cuz if I’d only seen the training dvds I wouldn’t have understood the depth and richness of experience you bring into your training.

Back to my story – a few months later a sympathetic friend at the ranch insisted on lending me money to buy a new horse. Since I had always wanted to do the more advanced dressage I was looking for that possibility in a horse but this was a problem since I had the desires of a princess with the purse of a pauper – it turns out dressage is a very yuppy, high-end pursuit. I really wanted to get a baroque horse, but that was so off my financial map. I searched for months locally and online and finally made a difficult decision (based upon a video) to buy a very affordable but untrained out-of-state arabian who looked alot like my beloved Bodhi (first horse) and had also scored in the 70’s in a dressage in-hand test. I figured I could train him because Bodhi had only just been started under saddle when I bought him and I had so much success doing most of his training myself after that. Not so. I’ve had my new horse, whom I named Habibi, for about 2 years now and, what a wake-up call it’s been. This horse has been difficult and challenging from day one – pushy, major space invader, wouldn’t pick up his feet, runs around at liberty with his nose stuck straight up in the air (what’s that about?) and did the same when I tried to bridle him. It’s been a long two years. Sent him to a reining trainer to get hims started under saddle based on the recommendation of a local dressage trainer. They did get him started under saddle, but they did nothing for his high emotional nature. I’ve been searching and researching constantly. Feel like I’ve been groping in the dark. Can’t tell you what I went through – books, videos, etc. just to learn how to get him to put his head down for bridleing! Reading about clicker training finally gave me the idea to teach him to put head down for a treat. Ahhh…now he loves to reach down for the bridle. How easy, and how pathetic that trainers don’t teach that – probably because they don’t approve of using treats. He now has mostly lovely ground manners. Leads on a loose rope, stands to my side and flexes his head to get a treat (I want to teach him to flex and walk/trot on a line or at liberty but haven’t been able figure it out), holds his feet up, even offers to hold it there asking for a treat.

But it hasn’t all been a pretty picture. Last Nov. on his fourth trail ride (just walking), he got nervous while waiting at a busy gate with lots of bicyclers and bucked me off. Not an ordinary buck – a huge launching into space. I was lucky, but shaken – physically and emotionally. Last Feb. an experienced dressage rider/trainer who had a horse at our barn made it affordable to start working with us w/ some NH and beginning dressage. He now does lovely free-lunging w/ side reins – stretching down, side passes in hand, yielding. On board is more challenging though, as he finds everything to spook at, pop his head up in emergency alert and avoid going smoothly, rhythmically, even at the trot. Many training sessions have been almost continuous one-rein stops due to resistance and behavioral issues. Most challenging for me has been my riding lessons because the trainer yells multiple commands at me and has me do, what feels like, horse wrestling. In a one hour lesson usually the first 50 min. are struggle and maybe (if we’re lucky) in the last 10 min. he softens and gives. But, by that time, I’m usually so stressed that I go home and cry, wondering if I should sell my horse. I imagine he’s probably wondering how he can get rid of his human. The trainer has more stamina for this sort of thing and, of course, she knows the moves. She’s started to take him out walking the trail. I really need her help because in the winter it’s dark when I get off from work and she rides him for me once or twice during the work week. But I know there’s got to be a way to train collection that works better for me (and, I think, my horse) – without the struggle. I didn’t have this level of resistance with my first horse, but now with this more challenging horse I’ve felt compelled to seek alternative ways of training. I’ve seen trainers online, playing with their horses and doing all the dressage moves on their horses bareback/ bridleless and at liberty. And I’ve been searching the web for someone who can teach this natural collection. I don’t care about the bareback, I just want to teach my horse (and myself) to collect without the struggle. Not only is collection beautiful, but I know it’s the best for the horse’s back. I’ve been searching for a way to learn this and, to date, have watched at least 30 training dvds without finding the answer.

Now, Carolyn, you are so generously offering your Uberstreichen Exercises. This is a dream come true for me – what I’ve been searching for all this time. I hope you will allow us to participate in this wonderful training opportunity.

p.s. Please, forgive the length of this! I got carried away and now, to edit would take even more time.
I’ll make an effort to be more succinct in the future.

Thank you for all you’ve learned and offered.

Stephanie Morse - 7 years ago Reply

I would love to participate. I am 53 years old, have had horses since I was 7. Started riding western, switched to Saddle Seat when I was 13. Competed in many horse shows growing up. Received a BS degree in Equestrian studies from William Woods University in 1977. Worked in the Saddle Horse industry for a few years.

Left the horses for aoubt 7 years. Started back with pleasure horses, and now have started a warmblood breeding farm, however, seeing the way the horse world is now (although it was probably much the same when I was younger, I just didn’t notice) I don’t think I’ll be selling any of my horses.

I have 13 horses, ranging in age from 3 weanlings to 2 8 year olds. None have been backed, I haven’t really had the amount of time needed. I read your book years ago, found your blog, and have been following the blog for a while. I just started sharing space, although I believe I have been connecting with the horses as you do, a few weekends ago.

I would really like to start everyone under saddle using your methods and feel the exercises would be great. Even if I am not at the place where the exercises would be beneficial, I hope I will be able to see them.

Thank you so much.

Dyann Johnson - 7 years ago Reply

Hello Carolyn,

I am interested in learning your Uberstreichen Exercises with my 8 year old Icelandic Horse named Raffin. I’ve been following your blog for the past 6 months and spent time each day over the summer sitting with Raffin while he ate. Lately we’ve been playing, running around his paddock. He’s a very calm boy who was started only a couple of years ago and hasn’t been ridden very much. I also started late – at 53 – just 2 years ago. Better late than never! After discovering the Horse Conscious website I decided to back off on the natural horsemanship riding and groundwork I was learning from a trainer, and didn’t ride my boy this year. Instead I have been taking lessons on other Icelandics, to gain more riding experience. My goal is to have a very close bond with Raffin and learn to ride him as lightly as possible in collection, in order to prevent stress or injuries to him.

I’d hoped to take your Waterhole Rituals in a box program this fall, but understand that you weren’t able to hold it, so I’d like to go ahead with the UE. It will be good for both me and Raffin to have some mental stimulation over the winter! I’ll also work on the WR from your DVD.

Susan Stuckert - 7 years ago Reply

My background with horses is a bit ecclectic, in that I rode bareback or western as a child, took up hunter/jumper in my late 20’s, then moved into eventing and finally dressage. I had the good fortune to ride with Charles de Kunffy, Eric Herbermann, and Sally Swift. I stumbled into your method when surfing the web looking for liberty training techniques. Then I had the priviledge of an hour coaching call with you and would love an opportunity to follow-up with more discussion on Uberstreichen. The Waterhole Rituals have improved the relationship with both of my horses, but especially my little gaited horse who did not care for people very much. I would be working with him due to my MS.

Linda Kosterman - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,

For so many years I hoped that there was more in life that you can achieve with horses. When I was a little girl horses where my everything and they where so inspiring to me to look further.
But it was difficult because everyone tought I was crazy to do things with horses as they where my true friend.
I must admit that I lost it a little at one point.

When I was 18 my parents told me that they wanted to buy a horse for me, while I was looking I saw a beautiful horse. We stared at each other for a few minutes and I knew that he was the one!
It was a difficult road because he was an ex-racehorse and wasn’t
adequately addressed, he was abused and had no trust in people.
People told me to sell him and hit him much more, but I didn’t listen and wanted to achieve more in a friendly way…a true band and friendship with him.
We have a band that I can not describe and he trust me now but when it comes to certain things he is still scared and I wreally wanted to help him to let go of that peace in his live and I still hope that we can achieve this.
His name is Sacrifice and he is 19 years old, we followed some courses in Natural horsemanship and the spiritual way, we did dressage and now we are just enjoying each other. He has a little pony as his friend named Shimmy and he can not do without him, before me he never had a friend was always standing alone in a dark stable.
I’ve worked on a horse-breeding for 8 years and I tried to change some methods they used for a horse-friendly way.

I have just for a week a new young horse he is 2 years old and has also little trust in people his name is Takoda. I hope that what the horses have shown me and what I am still learning in my path with horses that I can give him a great start and a true partnership and trust and respect that every horse should have and earned.

When I found your website and read many articles and saw how you are moving and the horse respondings, to that all I can say was WOW… so beautiful and with so much respect to the horse. I knew that, that is what I was looking for ,for so many years.
I wreally want to learn what you achieve with horses, totally from the hearth and working with the horse in such a great way!

Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge!

Sacrifice, Takoda and Shimmy

Linda from Belgium

Forest Horse - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn: I am eager to study the uberstreichens with you! I was in the last insider circle program.

I have 3 blm mustangs. Lalo 13 yo gelding, Frisco 10 yo gelding and Kaya 19 month old filly plus 4 burros.

I have been learning and practicing Peggy Cummings’ Groundwork Exercises and Riding Method for about 3 years now with my horses.

I have been practicing the WHR and studying your blogs and materials for about a year now.

Thanks for offering this information to all of us.

Anne Valdez - 7 years ago Reply

I have returned to horses after 26 years of training children up through the equivalent of haute ecole. I have a 9 year old 5/8 TB mare whom I have owned for 3 years. I also have a 4 1/2 year old 3/4 TB PMU rescue whom I have owned since he was 4 months old. I do not live near many trainers in any English disciplines, and I keep my horses at home and own no trailer, so any instruction I can get that is congruent with gentle or classical principles is most appreciated.
My mare has lovely movement until I am on her. I think her balance is very delicate, and she can shut down in a moment. My gelding has been backed only enough for him to give “pony” rides. I am actually hoping to move soon and put him in training for his under saddle basics. Meanwhile both lunge with or without equipment, saddles, surcingles, by voice command, and both are extremenly civilized for bathing, farrier, and the vet.

Kerstin de la Rue - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,

my name is Kerstin, I am from South Africa and was in the ‘box programme’ and loved it. For some reason I did not receive your blog automatically anymore and so was out of touch for a bit. Today I decided to look your site up again and wow!what do a find – you are offering the Ueberstreichen exercises I have been waiting so long for. Good timing. I would really like to learn about them, and want to particularly work with them on my 12 yo Friesian gelding Tom. We work together mainly at liberty, play together and he can walk and trot circles around me. But I don’t know how to progress from here and how to teach him more collected movements.
I am trying to further my relationship with my horses and it is sometimes difficult to figure things out for yourself without experienced guidance. I am therefore very grateful for all your teachings and just love your whole philosophy regarding horses and horsemanship.
With much appreciation
Kerstin de la Rue

Tonnya - 7 years ago Reply

My name is Tonnya and my horses are Anibal (PRE), Greifing (Swedish Coldblod) he’s the new’kid’ on the block and Futte (small charming pony).
I am an Insider Circle Box participant and I sit with my horses listening to all the WRIC calls again and again. I would really like to participate in the learning of Uberstreichen exercises as I feel that this will be a great benefit for future riding. I have had the pleasure of seeing the development of my bond with especially Anibal, whom I have concentrated on to start with.
I love your method because I have always wanted a better bond with my horses but before your method I did not succeed. This is also very important to me because of my disabillity. I need to be able to trust my horse and the other way around. I have had horses for a very long time but always seemed to be ‘missing a link’. Now I know why.
Thank you very much ! I read and save each and every blog you write.

Sally Spencer - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Caroline

I am very interested to learn more about the Uberstreichen Exercises and I am wondering if I am already doing something similar with 2 of my horses, Sophie and Babalouis. I have been using the internet to research these exercises and have not found enough detailed information about them.

Both horses like to work at liberty, able to walk and trot beside me, stop turn both ways, back up, ,also doing quite well at seperating moving their forehands and hind quarters, something I have beeen practicing for greater clarity for us and in order to clarify a forward and under step wth their hind legs and to prepare them for forehand and haunches turns. They also know how to work on a long rope maintaining a float/slack.


Sophie is 16:2hh around 18 years, an ex cross-country, Irish Draft x TB and a dominant mare but also very sensitive. We have a very close relationship. I bought her about 4 years ago by intuition and had to spend a year rehabilitating her as her back was atrophied and problems in the poll area were creating the same in the hindquarters. We have been making good progress overall. Increased fitness is helping us with our work but due to Sophie’s sensitivity about pressure I have been working on ways in which I can help her find a way to connect her body in order for her to feel more flexible and balanced without placing pressure on her head, hence the liberty work, which is also fun of course. Sophie does not want to wear a bit so we ride in a bitless bridle.

Babalouis is homebred,a 15:hand, 7 yr old, cob type, coloured Morgan X Irish Vanner gelding. He is sensitive but could be pushy. His focus is mainly about food, hence feeding him tidbits is not helpful. In the herd he will use his weight to push others out of the way. He really wants to get a long but I have to be clear about boundaries.

He is presently overweight and I am working on him releasing pounds. His training for riding has been delayed due to some injuries he sustained in the past. He also had great sensitivity to sound, even a bit squeaking but I have helped him through this. I am in the process of complete re training and preparing him for riding.

His hind quarters appear weak and. I am not exactly sure of why this is so but have my ideas about it. However, releasing weight in combination with more exercise and and connection in the liberty work is really improving things.

So thank you for offering to share these exercises.

I am very interested to learn about them.

Kindest Regards

Nayana Morag - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Caroline, would love to learn your uberstreichen exercises, I did the ‘in a box’ programme. I am a lifelong student of the horse and have various horses I work/play with, but if I need to nominate one it will be Beber, a 5 year old mostly QH gelding, with just enough Arab to make him interesting 😉 He needs a little clarification that a bridle is a means of communication as he has been ridden by inexperienced people before he really understood and he is now confused and thinks a bridle is just an irritant to be pulled against. He is now in my hands until he is secure in himself and what is expected of him. He loves to dance and learn and has a great sense of humour 🙂
I look forward to learning.

Hope Sali - 7 years ago Reply

Hi there, my name is Hope and I am 22 years old.I have been riding horses in whatever way I can for about 13 years now.I did trail riding and hunter/jumper mostly but recently have tried to start getting into reining with my horse.I have owned my horse for about 5 years.His name is Chance and he is a QH/paint.He is 10 years old and when he was 4 he had 30 days pro traing for reining on him and then was left without being ridden for about a year and a half. I started riding him and rode him for about a year and a half and fell in love with him.I tried english with him but have decided I want to go back to his roots with him.He has now had about 3 years off from riding but over the past year i have been doing a lot of ground work with him again and am about to start training him again soon.From your description Chance can do all the things that you have described is needed for this to work.He is also a very willing horse who tries hard to please but can be very nervous and unconfident at the same time.I have just heard of your methods about a month ago and am eager to learn, this will be the first i will be doing of yours.Please include us in your Uberstreichen Exercises. Thank you

Gretchen Austin - 7 years ago Reply

Hello Carolyn,
I have been a fan of yours ever since I was given one of your videos as a young teenager in Guatemala. I loaned my copy to my riding teacher, and then we moved back to Canada, and I only recently re-discovered you on the net. What a joy! I have now read your book, and I hope to get the WHR DVD for Christmas. I am starting a business teaching beginners to ride, basic horse care, and also starting young horses. There isn’t much of that available where I am in Northern Ontario. I know I have so much more to learn, and what I really want is to pursue that close relationship with a horse through classical dressage. I want to learn in-hand training, but especially I want to learn lightness. I am so glad I have learned that lightness exists, because I was beginning to despair that dressage had to be heavy-handed; meanwhile, horses were saying they weren’t happy with this pressure in their mouths. I’m starting to know enough to know who I should listen to, and I am delighted to hear about the Uberstreichen exercises you are offering.
I don’t currently have my own horse, but I do have access to one for about four hours per week. If I may, I’d like to try to learn this time around- I am dedicated and committed to learning this. I have so much respect for you and all you have gleaned, and I am so happy you are willing to share with the rest of us.

Stilla Piotrowski - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

I am very interested in taking part in your uberstreichen training. 11 years ago I moved from Germany to Australia and I love it here. I am a certified equine bowen therapist and love working with horses. We have 6 horses on our property, my youngest is a 2 year old thoroughbred which I bred and the oldest is a 27 year oldquarterhorse/arabian mare.

The horse I would do the uberstreichen training with is my 19 year old arabian gelding Harley. I bought him 6 years ago, he was a very nervous and hard horse. He has softened a lot over the years, we are having a great time together at ground, I can ride him long, he loves all that. But as soon I try to have a bit more contact we both struggle. I believe the uberstreichen training would bring us just one step closer.
If I can develop the skills to help Harley along I know I will be so much better for all of my horses.

I have been following Klaus Ferdinand Hempfling and I heard about you 7 months ago. It’s been a pleasure reading your blogs, every time there is more to learn, things make more sense just a wonderful journey.
Thank you for giving us more understanding and making our world a better place. If people are happy in themselves they can share this happiness.

Stilla Piotrowski

Diane Engdahl - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,
I would love to be included, and I think my horses would too, if you would please consider me for your uberstreichen exercises. I haven’t done the waterhole rituals as yet but I’ve read Hempflings book among other philosophies and techniques, but I love your style and thoughtful connection.
I have 2 boys, and go out in the field almost every day to share the view with Rowan (12 yrs-elegant TWH w/ traumatic past, he ‘blanks out’-“retired’) and Archer (a big 3 1/2 yrs Friesian / TB gelding). This summer we picked blackberries together regulary. Archer fetches his dish and shakes hands (with his hind legs). When I put up an electric fence this week, he came over to help and handed me a post, then the wire roll (being friendly and trying hard for a treat).
When I got him last year..he reared and kicked my farrier. My farrier is wonderful, and was patient with him. He is doing much better now. I found out that Archers first haltering experience as a (big)weanling was to drag his owner across the field. He can get a little pushy but he’s really interested in trying new things. He saddles up great but gets a little fresh inhand sometimes. He takes a few steps before standing for the fly spray, but he backs and moves over very politely, leads happily through wet tarps and strange objects. Worms easily and stands for sheath cleaning, lets me pull his tail all over, put big inflatable toys on his back etc. But on occasion, Archer clamps his front feet when I ask for them. (He is a full 17 hh). Sometimes he follows me, then breaks off to graze. Even grazing with Rowan, he’s independent. He chased a 4 point buck and an elk out of the field for fun.
He does try hard and he loves to learn.
Thank you so much for sharing your knowledge!

Carol Manson - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn
I am very interested in learning the Uberstreichen exercises. I participated in the insider circle course this summer with my horse Shadow and really enjoyed it. She is a 12 year old thoroughbred mare and has made some very positive changes this summer in her general attitude. I am really looking forward to your new lessons. Thank you.

Toni Farrell - 7 years ago Reply


I am interested in the Uberstreichen Exercises. My name is Toni Farrell, I am 57 years old, and I have been riding horses since I can remember. Most of my experience is in the form of English riding. (Hunter/Jumper) Very “old school”. About 12 years ago I started learning about NH, and have been using it ever since with great sucess. My 4 year old Mustang, Lyle, is the first horse I gentled myself. He is VERY playfull, and loves attention. I have been trying to get him to collect through “suggestion” through my reins, with some leg aids. He responds very well, but my knowledge in this area is not very good. He is so very soft, that not much rein is needed. I use mostly seat and leg aids, with reins as guidance. I found your blog a month or so ago, and I have been trying to put your method to use. I want to instill a better sense of companionship in my relationship with my horse. I am very fortunate to be able to keep Lyle on my own property. When I go out to see him, he usually squeals and runs to the barn to say hello. (Not always, but most times.) I work at Liberty with him and he is now starting to follow my movements better. Any help and new learning would be most appreciated.

Jennifer Joy Middleton - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn Resnick,

I have found a way to have a horse to ride since I was a small child despite growing up quite poor. I never bought a trained horse and couldn’t afford to pay someone else to train so i have done my best mostly on my own. Much trial and error. Thank goodness horses are benevolent . I have strong feelings about the fair treatment of others, including horses. I am a buddhist and I am constantly challenging myself to find the kindest way to interact with horses, which led me to your name about a year ago. I have a deep respect and apreciation of you and your meathods. I think you’re great!

I now have a 5 year old oldenberg-thoroughbred mare named Liberty whom I ride with a side-pull rather than a bit. I had 3 months pro training on her when I first got her and I am devoted to continue refining our relationship and riding for the rest of our years together. We have come a long way so far and she is a delight. From your description of requirements, I believe Liberty and i are ready.
Thank you so much.

Jennifer Joy Middleton.

Nor'dzin Pamo - 7 years ago Reply

As a teenager I rode a great deal and had the good fortune to exercise horses for other people, though I was never able to own one. I came back to horseriding about seven years ago (I’m now in my 50’s) and bought my first horse. I ‘rescued’ her from a riding school where she was very unhappy and becoming increasingly aggressive to the other horses. Her name is Dee and she is 19. I’ve been following your blog for quite a while and have tried out quite a few of your methods, mostly with some success. Dee has been a well-schooled horse and competed at cross country with a previous owner years ago. She loves to jump, but I just ride her on the trails.
She will walk with me without tack and halt, turn and back up. She is very easy to do anything with in terms of picking feet, etc. I’ve done a bit of free work with her at other paces and she is fine, except that she favours the right rein and runs out of the other direction. I have ridden her in a bitless bridle with loose reins now for several years and we are quite ‘in tune’ with each other. She lacks confidence and will not go out on rides on her own, though recently we have successfully been out on our own a couple of times. In the herd she is a dominant mare, and I do have to be quite firm with her sometimes when she challenges me. I believe she trusts me, and I know she is enjoying that I am spending more time with her these days and riding several times a week.
I would love to learn your Uberstreichen Exercises, as I think having a more structured approach to working together would be good for us both, and they sound like the sort of thing I could manage given my circumstances.

Laury Grant - 7 years ago Reply

I am partners with an 18 yr old QH mare who is finally beginning to trust me. Her previous career was in reining, where she was just made to do it. It has taken several years for her to adjust to being a pleasure horse and she will only do trails if another horse is with her.

You methods seem to match what I am looking for, so please include us in your lessons.

Lyse - 7 years ago Reply

Oops, forgot to mention and Luna, Orreo and myself are from Langley, BC, Canada

Lyse - 7 years ago Reply

Hello Carolyn,
I would like to apply for your Uberstreichen exercise course. I took the first Insider Circle course with my horse Luna. I would like to teach her the exercises particularly because we struggle with her tendency to lean into my hands, whether with a bit or not. She is 8, she is quite competent with the whr’s. We can companion walk and trot, I can pick up all feet and place them down, except for her right hind, which she still finds difficult to give up. We can fly spray.
I have a 3 year old azteca, which I talked about during the last call of the IC – he’s the one I was saying walked into the trailer on his own. Anyhow, he is unstarted, and is progressing with the whr’s. For all intent and purpose he is easier to be around than the mare; he’s relaxed with just about anything I ask him, so, I thought the whr’s and UE’s would be great to get him started for riding.

Thank you for this wonderful offer and I hope you feel we can join your class.

Coco Spurway - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,
I am very interested in signing up for this class. I am presently reading your book. I feel I have a very close relationship with my horses but would like to make it even better.
I have 7 TWHs ages 2-15 years old. I don’t do any showing and believe in a natural lifestyle for them. They are all barefoot and I do most of the trimming.
The two horses I have in mind for this class are Esse a two year old filly and Cameo a five year old mare. Esse was born here and she is very bonded to me. I’ve done lots of ground work with her in the “natural” style and she is just a joy to be around. The other one is Esse’s half sister who was also born here. Her name is Cameo. I ride her and have done lots of fun things with her. She is very light and responsive but it would be fun for both of us if we could improve on that.
I look forward to this class!
Coco Spurway

Pam Knick - 7 years ago Reply

I am interested in learning your Uberstreichen Exercises. I’ve been following natural horsemanship principles for many years now. I saw your first video and have been reading your blog for several months now. My current horse, Bear, is 33, but tries very hard. He has problems coming through from behind when ridden due to aches and old injuries, but should be fine with in hand exercises.

Katja Behrens - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn
I am visiting your webside since maybe two month and just ordered 2 DVDs of yours. In the moment I am riding an older gelding who is a very gentle and well schooled horse. He is not my horse but I’m the one who mainly cares and rides him. I have tried throughout little excercises of yours with him but didn’t do so much systematic training. I try now to spend as much time as possible with sharing territory but also try little things with food, companion walking or leading from behind in between if appropriate. He reacts very well and our subtle communication and relationship has improved a lot. He is doing a lot of things for me just because I am asking politely and believe in his willingness and understanding.
I have regular dressage lessons and feel that I have more and more light connection with him and would be delighted if I can be part of the ueberstreichen exercises.
What I am always a little bit unsure about is, if I have to do the first ritual fully until I can do anything else with him. In the mometn I mix a little bit everything together.
I thank you very much for your great generosity and wisdom. There is so much more space and love between me and my horse.
All the best for you! Katja

Laurinda Reinhart - 7 years ago Reply

Hello Carolyn,
thank you for your wonderful offer. I have had the pleasure of horses in my life for the past 19yrs. We have 4 horses now and three that are angels. Talking about one is hard without mentioning another, as their stories are all interconnected. Tahintate is my 12yr old, 14.3h foundation, rangerbred leopard app stallion. He came here because he needed sanctuary. He was my mare Snipper’s (who passed away this yr) soul mate. He’s lived here in a very natural state for the past three years, enriching our lives and that of his beloved mare. He is an extremely gentle, sensitive and sentient soul. I have mostly been playing on the ground with him, doing the friendly games and just working on our communication. I have ridden him a little, bareback and with and without a bit, so the uberstreichen exercises should really benefit him. It appears he probably was mostly ridden with a bosal in the past. He responds well to voice, but doesn’t steer very well or know his gaits. “} When I can get myself in that connected space with him, he just amazes me!! This year I have been doing some of the waterhole rituals with him, after I was introduced to them thru He will walk with me on line and at liberty, and we have taken companion walks on our trails. He is telling me he is ready for me to trail ride him, but thus far I have been nervous to hit the trails alone. It has been hard to start over with new horses, and yet we have journeyed so far in unexpected ways. Without their coming into my life when they did, I would not have gotten thru the loss of my old timers. Our goal is ultimately to be able to trail ride Tahintate with the rest of the horses. I will also be practicing with my mare Kate, another special soul who has freed the child in me again and let me gallop thru the fields bareback with just a halter at 48!!…something my 15yr old daughter is not ready to do.

Jane - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn

Jane from the UK. I was part of the insider circle with the yearling exmoor pony that was born into the wild and was very shy. This sounds very exciting. But I’m not sure Billy will be quite ready. He’s doing really well with the rituals and I put a halter on him for the first time a week ago he was perfect – when I started with you on the WRIC I couldn’t touch his head at all. I can pick his feet up and groom him all over at liberty but must admit never tried fly spray – that may take some work. I have taken your advice and am going really slowly with him. Its really paying off – hope we may be able to participate but understand if you think Billy’s not advanced enough. Love the blog always eager for the next.

Leanna Kielian - 7 years ago Reply

My apology, my husband John said I didn’t clearly answer your questions regarding the readiness of Ama for your Uberstereichen exercises. We currently ride with a plain noseband(not bit) because her mouth has thickened from melanomas over time and she was no longer happy with one, there have been no open lesions of any kind. She is currently picking up her feet by request with no restraint even at the lesson barn(the first of the horses to do this off site. I always recheck for gravel and stones before we begin our lesson after riding over. She comes when called, companion walks, stops etc. with a loose rein or none with the exception of the road, still working on relaxation to and from the lesson barn. She now holds her own feet, either through better soundness or better relationship or both. Spray is no problem, I can touch her anywhere, anytime, something we had to work on when she first arrived having not been fed individually. I quietly handle all the horses when they are eating and check legs, backs, pick feet, groom free etc. They are all excellent except True who still has some left side issues but always offers and holds her own feet. I can place Ama’s feet, and am really happy about her progress picking them that took time and giving her a reason to enjoy it(patience, treats & scratches.) I may have to stop riding for a time as MRI results this week suggest I may have a pinched nerve, so the exercises would be a wonderful way for us to continue and improve our relationship, relaxation and refinement. Thank you for your time.

Annette Garcia - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,
Thank you for offering this program. I live in Indio Calif. a very familiar place to you. My trainer Vincent S. recommended your web-site to me. He is a dear friend of yours and speaks very highly of you often. I have enjoyed your blogs very much and purchased all your DVD’S. I am an Insider Circle student and you have touched my life forever. I am a Board member of the Coachella Valley Mounted Rangers. We are a non-profit organization that helps the community and helps rescue horses.
I have 3 horses and they are all unique and special to me. Jazzy is a 8 year old Quarter Horse mare that has been with me her whole life. “Spoiled rotten” The love of my life! I also have a 14 year old Fox Totter gelding Riley that I got at the age 12 and was very green. He now loves playing with obstacles and many games.
My 3rd horse is a 10 year old Fox Trotter Mare Gracy that is very green. I have had her for 5 months. She came piney eared and scared. I practiced your 7 waterhole rituals with her and in a short time our relationship changed. I now have a trusting willing bond with her that is so amazing. She as well as my other 2 horses always leave their food and come to me with a sparcle in their eye.They dress themselves with their halter wanting to come out and play. That was the first change and the rest is too long to describe. People often comment on their great behavior. I love to companion walk with my horses. We share many wonderful adventures together.Thank you for helping me expand my relationship with my horses. My heart is full! Thanks to you and Vincent I have learned so much more about the way horses think. Vincent asked me to study this method and together we will explore it.
I am so excited to play with Riley and my mentor Vincent with the Uberstreichen method. In time my other horses will follow. Thank you for sharing your gifts and including us in this wonderful journey.
Thank you so much for this amazing knowledge you share and for being a great blessing in our lives!
Annette Garcia

Alessandra Deerinck - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
Rosalie and I have been practicing the exercises a lot, as you know, and we would be very happy to be in your fall class!

Thank you for offering such a great program.

Lynn Scott - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

I have been hoping that you would offer something in the Uberstreichen exercises and want to be part of the programme, please. Your winter is our summer and it is quieter for me at work and I have more time to do this programme. This is a very generous way to offer this help. You continue to amaze me with your knowledge and thoughts and to be able to do this will be wonderful.

I would not do the programme with my brumby, Sakima in this programme.

It would be my riding horse Zippin. While doing the Inner Circle programme with you it was my brumby Sakima that I focussed on and talked about on the calls. However, parallel to his journey I took Zippin through the programme and have done all the rituals with him. He happily goes trot and comes up and companion walks. From your descripition he is ready for Uberstreichen and I would relish the chance to do this with Zippin.

One day it will be Sakima who takes the Uberstreichen jounrey but not just yet.

Thanks for this.

Lynn Scott

stina - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,

I have gotten online coaching from you for two years, I would love to do the uberstreichen excersies.

I will have teach my horses first to let me put their feet down where i ask and to hold the foot off the ground as long as i need without the horse leaning his weight on. I also cannot fly spray all my horses.

I guess we will have to learn this first, and will follow on the blog.

sun, wind, light and rain from St. Vincent, small video clip coming soon.

Ginny Elliott - 7 years ago Reply

Thank you for offering to share your Uberstreichen exercises. Based on the effectiveness of your Method, not to mention all the information I picked up from reading your book, I believe anything you choose to share will be valuable!

Ever since I first learned about you a year and a half ago, Carolyn, your book your dvd, and your blog have all been a valuable addition to the relationship Oreo and I have been developing over the past 6 years. We’ve also followed Pat and Linda Parelli’s program: we have passed the old Level 2 assessment and continue to select things to do together from the old Level 3 booklets. We also study the books and dvd’s of Klaus Ferdinand Hempfling.

About 6 months ago I sent you an email with a photo and gave you some specific examples of how much your Method has meant to us.

I grew up riding but never owned a horse until 35 years ago. Oreo is a 14 year old TWH gelding with a willing heart and a clever mind. I believe he was started the natural way; I have found he has no “issues.” Before I got him, he was 1 of 30 horses used for bird hunting and field trials for hunting dogs. He was ridden with a shank bit by both the participants and the scouts on and off the trails.

Shortly after I got him I began riding him with no bit.

We play at liberty almost every day and make time for undemanding time every day without fail. We ride an average of 3 times a week either here in his 1 1/2 acre pasture or on the trails. I was encouraged by your advice to teach him things at liberty and have been doing so with much success. I strongly agree with your belief that horses want to use their intelligence and that when they are encouraged to make choices during their learning experience, they develop and grow in their intelligence.

Thank you for considering Oreo and me.

Robyn Bardas - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
I live in the South Island of New Zealand and have been talking myself through not being able to do the ‘in a box program’ which was cancelled! I’ve assured myself that i can continue to play with the whr’s on my own and not let anything slow me down, so the opportunity to do some work on these excercises is fantastic.

My new horse Tom has come to me with great purity of heart, love and connectedness. He is a 5 yr old andalusian x gelding and has only been handled with ‘natural’ methods and respect. We have the deepest and most connected relationship I’ve ever had with a horse, which was almost instant upon meeting.

I’ve had horses since I was 5 and been a weekend rider ever since (nearly 40 years!!) The whr’s remind me of the hours upon hours of lounging around with and on my pony as a kid.

Tom has been started and done lots of groundwork, and only been ridden in an arena. We’re just getting used to eachother and starting to venture further away into paddocks. We ride on a loose rein, and he’s responsive to seat and thoughts, and i’m responsive to his direction and interests. In a new paddock recently he wanted to look at our flock of wild sheep, so we went over and he rounded them up for a while, then moved on.

He loves being rubbed around the mouth, and stretches his mouth and jaw like a massage, so i’d love to ride without a bit (or halter or saddle for that matter).

i can’t say we’ve mastered all the whr’s (or even tried them all) but he’ll come with me anywhere, is light soft and respectful on the ground, yields all 4 corners happily, and has a naturally rounded (cresty) topline and relaxed low head carriage.

Some regular instruction and interaction would be awesome for us,

thankyou for the opportunity,

Robyn and Tom

Diane Paine - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,
I would be so grateful to be part of your Fall program on the Uberstreichen Exercises. I have had only one horse in my life and still have her. Her name is Hoofer and she is a 25 1/2 year old Thoroughbred mare, highly sensitive and very strong. I was green (and older-48 yrs) when I acquired her from my teenage daughter. They were not a good match. In hindsight we were not a good match either because of my total inexperience with horses, but the heartstring connection ran so deeply from the beginning that we have stayed together. It has not been easy, I have learned so very much, and I don’t ride a lot (only walk and trot). She has a clear idea of fairness and respect and that has subsequently eliminated much of the journey of different types of “training”and trainers over the 14 years we have had her our family. Nothing much has worked except some natural horsemanship, very little tack and lots of ground time and hanging out together. Hoofy respects me and I have learned skills that keep us both safe on the ground. She responds well to the Waterhole Rituals and I intend to work with them constantly over the winter. We had to move to a different barn for older horses and have no covered area from the incessant rain. Over the past four months I have been studying and following your blog. I print each one out and all the past ones and read and highlight them for my WHR#1 reading material. I have your book (read 3x) and audio book on ipod and all your current DVDs which I have watched several times. I had signed up for your “In the Box Program” this fall. I go everyday to spend some time with her. I am so grateful to still have a horse in my life as I almost lost her this spring. I love to learn your work, I love everything about your work and what you embrace and your vision for relationship with horses. I want to learn more and grow and change and deepen my relationship with Hoofy. Thank you for your generous sharing with us all.

vicky clink - 7 years ago Reply

I would absolutely love to take part in this program for the Uberstreichen exercises! i am new to your work. However I hope that I am right in thinking that i have a good enough rapport with my horse to begin them. We have achieved level3 parelli, apart from the freestyle riding as I have not yet sent the video in that we filmed.

apart from this we are exploring flexion and stretching. The aim is to work in self carriage with lightness, however we are not there yet! I think your program would help immensely. I have recently begun to explore more classical riding here in the UK with the aim of helping shanti with his balance and flexibility. and helping me with everything ridden! he is really enjoying this which I am surprised by as in our old days he hated dressage. however i have been using a very different and more gentle approach recently than in th epast. and am no longer afraid to tell trainers that my horse is not happy and to leave. now that i inderstand him better i can see that he enjoys the mental exercises and a gentle approach to any kind of dressage. and i have been rewarded by having a happy horse waiting for me at the gate, with an interested look in his eye, as if he wonders what today will bring!

Shanti is an 11yr old, part bred arab. he has been with me since he was 2 and he really is my lifes partner! We have done all sorts of things together, not least travelling and camping together in france in 2005.

i really hope i am not too late to join in!
vicky clink

Hannah Rivard - 7 years ago Reply


I am Hannah Rivard, your student from Minnesota who was going to come down this last summer as a working student before some things fell through with it. I have continued to pursue your method combined with horsemanship through feel principles because I see it as encompassing so much of what seems right and effective in horsemanship: melding free choice with leadership, tack with liberty, all in the context of culture and relationship. Your method is one of the few methods that has provided guidance along my dream of bridleless and liberty dressage.

I have ridden since I was five years old, pursued traditional horsemanship until about 2005, when I began natural horsemanship. A few years later I incorporated clicker, trick training, and some Nevzorov principles, and then found your method and horsemanship through feel, which I have since been pursuing with my PRE mare, Maia. Maia is currently at a boarding stable and I have limited access to her while studying at college, but we have gone through the waterhole rituals and are continually perfecting those while going on “trail walks” and working on speeds within a gait. I feel uberstreichen exercises will be a great next step. I will work on them as often as I can when I can get out to see her. Maia is also green-broke for a rider.

I am excited to continue studying with you. Already I have gone places with Maia I have never before reached with a horse – what a journey awaits!


Eileen Coe - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn!
I would love to participate with my Arabian Mare Mohna. She is a 13 year old, full of energy. I am a level 2 Parelli student, and I also have been spending lots of undemanding time with her as per your suggestions. I have read your book, Naked Liberty, and I follow your Blog religiously! Mohna and I have a growing relationship, and she will follow my around at Liberty. I also am a certified Equine Acupressure practitioner, and believe in the sensitivity of horses to everything around them. Thank you for offering this as a way to help horses!

Jan Bray - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

I have been a student of and a steward to horses for over 30 years. I currently care for 2 aged Hanoverian mares (Magnolia aka Maggie (29) and Alouette aka Lou (25)), 2 Gypsy Ponies (Nickers (8) and Jacob aka Jake(3)) and Morgenrote aka Dutchess(14)) a Dutch Warmblood mare, who came last May. She will be my main partner in the Uberstreichen exercises, but I hope to work with Nickers and Jake (a stallion) also – neither has been trained to ride. Dutchess was a jumper and has some dressage training. She is such a willing partner and freely gives whatever is asked of her. I want to share this training with her as a way of deepening the bond that is growing between us. Your method is an answered prayer received at a time when I had reached what seemed to be an insurmountable impass with Jake and with Lou. It has helped me to grow beyond the limitations of my will and take a hard look at what I was asking from them. It has allowed me to enter into their (truly) magical world and feel the magnetic connection when it is present. I feel an acceptance that is absolute and unconditional. Your work has opened up new possibilities and has given me hope when I thought a change was impossible to acheive. If I had to describe the turnaround, it would have to be about intention and connection rather than a forceful will, being present to what presents itself in the moment and the effortless results that come out of connection because we are of one mind. The idea of “working with resistance to achieve relaxation” can only underscore the above.

Forever Thankful,


Niek Janssen - 7 years ago Reply

Quick summary

Ive been riding for 14 years now, the biggest part of this is spent studying (natural) horsemanship, now im comming back to my passion of classical dressage. I love getting more angles and view points on this.

This is my first interest in your progamn but im thankfull for each opertunity to learn. And my arabian buddy feels the same.

Looking foreward to the next instalment of these sessions


Shoshin - 7 years ago Reply

Please add me to the sign-up list for the Uber-stretch series.

I have followed your blog for the last year, have your Waterhole Rituals DVD, & follow you & others in the Horse Conscious group.

The horse: I am guardian to Bodhi the OTTB, who is 8-years rising, whom I adopted nearly 4 years ago.

Bodhi is (as are virtually all horses) naturally crooked–he is decidedly left-handed, & consistent with such tendencies periodically comes up lame.

I use the Hilary Claytion core-strengthening stretches but need to do more, on the ground & certainly from the saddle, to correct his crookedness (& help him stay sound).

As I am a terrible rider & not presently capable of riding him shoulder-ins & other straightening (dressage) gymnastics, I am hoping that your Uber-stretch series will help me help Bodhi.

Greater Washinbgton, D.C. area

Karla Lauritsen - 7 years ago Reply

Hello Carolyn,

I have been a long distance rider for the past decade and a follower of your teachings ever since recommended to me 5 years ago by a clinician of equine body work and riding.

I’ll be working with both of my horses: Pycabo is a 16 yr. old Arabian mare, who has been primarily a trail horse, after growing up feral in a large broodmare herd for her first 6 years, followed by some basic training with reining and dressage trainers. She is an ultra sensitive “princess and the pea” type, recently upgraded by my instructor to The Queen…and I somehow need to become an artist to ride her well.

Hawk is a 19 yr. old Arabian gelding, imprinted by and growing up with two teenage human sisters in rural New Mexico, started on the track and in combined-training by the girls’ mother, who had competed in eventing in Brazil and showed on the U.S. national Arabian show circuit. I acquired him at 5, for endurance. Hawk has some damage from being started with draw-reins, German martingale, and a saddle that pinched his withers/shoulders, as well as from a picketing wreck and me learning to ride. He enjoys hanging out with people, bareback riding with a halter, brief speed plays through the woods, and the newest thing…. He loves to learn.

I am currently riding with a dressage/Feldenkrais instructor, whom, after a 6 months of revisiting basic skills with me, believes I’m ready to re-invite contact through the reins…at the end of the ride season, in the NW snow zone! So delving into Uberstreichen with you this winter is perfect.

Thank you,

Ang Green - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
Indi, Polo and I would love to pursue our learning by adding the Uberstreichen exercises to our programme. We were in the In A Box Programme during the summer and had just a great time. We continue daily, some days more progress than others of course but we are having fun. We are sharing territory every day, leading from behind, companion walking and trotting ( a few steps of canter when heading towards the carrots!), go trot and come up.
Indi is a 12 yr old 15.1 coloured TBxcob, and Polo is a 17 yr old, 12 hand welsh section A.

I have Naked Liberty and your WR DVD. I listen repeatedly to our telephone sessions from the programme as they help to keep us motivated and moving forwards.

We look forward to this new phase of learning and growing. THANK YOU!!!

Ingrid Spikker - 7 years ago Reply

Thank you so much. This couldn’t have come at a better time for my 13 year old Canadien mare August and I. She is the grand daughter of a mare I had when I was a twelve year old. I have always walked with my horses and spent as much time hanging out with them as riding. I have a great relationship with her and have her respect, but she is a strong willed girl and also very opinionated. She will let me know if something is not right or it’s time to reevaluate the direction I’m taking. The kind of horse that gets labeled as difficult and untrainable by someone who adheres to ‘programs’

We have always been trail partners first and foremost. She will go anywhere and is enthusiastic about going places and is very brave. Always meeting me at the gate when she sees the bridle. I have decided to introduce her to dressage recently and we have had four lessons. We are not going back. For the first time in her life she is walking away from me and clearly not impressed. I felt my last two lessons where so wrong. I did the last lesson not wanting to throw in the towel after one bad lesson. During the last lesson, she was frustrated, I was frustrated and the instuctor was asking for more contact than I have ever used in a halt so you can see how confused that made her. I could go on, but to sum it all up, it just all felt bad and wrong. I should have stopped it 10 minutes after we started.

I have decided to read as much as I can absorb and go my own route. The last thing I want to do is follow the methods producing sore, broken spirited horses who don’t even seem to know how to be a horse anymore. Robots not allowed to voice their opinions or don’t dare to.

I am looking forward to this and I know my mare will welcome your methods. I have her yearling gelding who I already take on hikes with me and he is just as smart and enthusistic as his mother. I am already doing liberty with him and he absolutely loves to be part of all of it.

Joanna Blake (Devon, UK) - 7 years ago Reply

Hello, apologies, forgot to mention my surname and that my mare is called ‘Sun’ and she came to me as an unhandled two year old. our first year to gether has been about walks in the countryside, touching all over, liberty grooming and fun!
Thank you, Joanna

Joanna (Devon, UK) - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,
Thank you for your generous offer.
I would love to be included in the programme. I am moving forward with the rituals since i discovered your blog and DVD and book, four months ago.
My Arabian mare is nearly three and a half and the impact of the rituals so far has been a calmer, more focussed relationship, where eye contact and felt connection is growing each day. i have been around horses since a young child. When I bought my mare I struggled with the ‘show them who is boss’ approaches as pressure/release just didn’t work and didn’t sit comfortably with me at all. That led me to your method and along with the specific guidance given in the blogs, your holistic approach that includes meditation really speaks to me (I think my mare appreciates it too!)

Lisa Mayer - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,

I think this is a wonderful opportunity but do not know if I am ready to sign up for it, at least not with my Haflinger mare with whom I have been working with the waterhole rituals. Although she meets the criteria for good manners and feet handling, we are progressing slowly in the area of companion walking. I was thinking that maybe I could apply your exercises better to my daughter’s 17 year young Morab. He was trained in dressage initially, then was owned and further trained by a pony clubber for seven years, then had a new owner who used him as a hunter/jumper for two years, then as a backyard ‘pet” for another two. We got him in the spring (and my daughter had lessons on him from his pony-clubber owner this summer). He loves people and is well trained although somewhat “out of shape”. Although I haven’t been specifically working with him on the waterhole rituals, one day in the barn paddock while I was working with my Haflinger, he stood watching. Soon he mosied over and he got it — through the companion walking! I was shocked. I was thinking of maybe doing more with him this winter, as my daughter gets very cold and won’t be out to the barn much to spend time with him. I think he definitely could benefit.

I only have five years of horse ownership under my belt and I have had the care of my own and six other horses during that time. If you feel that it would be appropriate for me at this time to participate more fully, sign me up! If not, I am content to continue reading your blog, learn what I can, and apply your method to the best of my ability with both horses until the spring when you do the waterhole ritual class again.

Thank you.

Rathel Gincig - 7 years ago Reply

I participated in the recent Waterhole Rituals class. They have changed my life with my horses and have changed life for my horses. I run a small program of horsemanship for at risk youth in Aurora, Colorado. I work with about 10 horses. Though I focused on 2 specific horses for the rituals, I have used them to help most of the other horses as well. I can observe the difference in the horses that have been exposed to them, and the ones who haven’t…yet. I also am helping my more experienced young riders (and student teachers) to use them as part of their regular work with the horses. I have been anxiously awaiting the Uberstreichen Exercises! I would love to be in the class this winter.

joncy muselwhite - 7 years ago Reply

I have a 3yr old appaloosa gelding i trained myself. I would like to join your training classes. I have rode and trained horses for about 12yrs now ,but i like the way you handle horses. I have done all my ground work and have a nice gentle horse. I would like to keep training him with your techneques. joncy

Dan Maxwell - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,

Please consider Kissy and I for your free Uberstreichen Exercises program.

I rode a lot as a young boy and have recently started riding again. About a year ago, I started lessons with a local natural horsemanship instructor. I ride bareback primarily with halter and clip-on reigns.

About 8 months ago, I read Naked Liberty and ordered your waterhole rituals DVD. I’ve watched the DVD a number of times and find you to be thoughtful, philosophical, and profound.

Kissy is a 14 year old American Saddlebred. She’s extremely sensitive and highly trained as a show horse. In short, she’s like a refined lady who’s been to finishing school. But she lacks confidence and suffers from what I call “performance anxiety.” Years of tightly choreographed training has created a worry-wart who constantly questions her ability to think and act.

Right now, I’m doing a lot of natural horsemanship things with her, working hard to develop Kissy as a thinking being. I believe both of us would benefit from your Uberstreichen Exercises program. I definitely want to move in the direction of lightness and collection on a “loose reign.” Kissy has the potential to be ridden and worked in a shared space of maximum freedom, joy, and obligation.

I want to thank you for your offer this past summer to come out and observe the wild horses at Return to Freedom and am sorry I was unable to come. I’m continuing my doctoral studies in human-horse communication systems and would love to talk with you further (as time permits) – either by phone or email.

With best wishes,


Kim Male - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

Yes, please consider me for the Uberstreichen Exercises. I am an Insider
Circle person as well my 3 horses, Miracle, Breezy and Harry.

I have been involved with horses for many years—-12 years as a kid to 27 years old, riding balance seat and hunt seat equitation. I owned 3 horses during that time. The last one a Quarter horse stallion I rescued from going to the kill auction. He was basically wild, never been handled until I got him. Fortuantely he had fabulous temperament in his breeding, so my experience with him was much like the ‘Black Stallion’. Funny, my first introduction to him, was to just hang out with him in his pasture. It worked wonders. This was in the early 80’s. I wish I had known of you then—an even more amazing journey I would have had with him.

Anyway, also during that time, I had several lessons in dressage with notable people, worked on breeding farms with Andalusians, Tennessee Walkers, Polish Arabians, Saratoga Race Track and logging with Belgians.

At 27, I took an 18 year hiatus to explore life, only to come back to horses in my 40’s. This round with 2 Clydesdales and a Percheron. I have had these three for 7 years now.

I am very interested in the Uberstreichen Exercises, and have been waiting with avid anticipation to learn more. I loved loved loved The Waterhole Rituals—they are everything I have dreamed about and have expanded my relationship with my 3 and even with my kitties.

I don’t know where all this is going to take me—I only know it all feels right and amazingly is all falling into place for some higher plan, I am sure.
My dream has always been to have a spiritual connection with my horses—even as a kid, a connection that makes us one and me a better human.
So it’s the connection I strive for. In my fantasy, I would love to share this connection with others, as they do in Cavalia.

I will be working with Miracle mostly, my Percheron mare and the other two as it works for them—Harry and Breezy are going through a detox program right now, due to environmental pollution causing neurological issues that came out during the summer.

Miracle is green still, we ride with a halter and she responds well to leg aids, hand cues and voice—at a walk. I haven’t worked with the other gaits yet except through ground work.

All three love to learn new things. We are excited.

Thank you
Kim Male

Máire Kennedy - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

I would love to work with your Uberstreichen exercises. I have been a horse owner for 6 years, following years of on and off riding school riding. I came across your blog through the Path of the Horse DVD and have been following it ever since. I have read your book and was in the Insider Circle In a Box programme.

I bought my cob, Ben, four months ago. His background is hunting with, I would say, minimal flatwork. He was hard to catch and a bit sour when I bought him and has really opened up in response to the rituals. He lifts his feet easily, he walks, trots, halts and backs from a gesture or my body language. Underneath his dominant rather switched off exterior he is a sweetheart actually! He loves to learn.

I do not ride bitless but am interested in trying, because, while Ben is ridden in a snaffle and does not have a hard mouth, he seems to have tension just prior to being bridled, as he gives huge yawns each time.

Thanks you for teaching us this.


Rebekka Pertenbreiter - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,
we will love to work on your free instruction of the Uberstreichen Exercises!
I will work with Seana, my 5 y.o. mare. I have started her myself, changing from English riding to a more classical way last year, along with some classes in Horsemanship and your WHR from the DVD, also read your book.
The WHR helped me a lot to establish and keep a connection with her! She (or I) dissociated a lot. I’m still struggling with “go trot” … “go trot” works, but I cannot make her come back in trot (I can draw her in though walking).
All other things work quite well, also she offers her legs, so I think we are ready to start the Uberstreichen Exercises.

Nancy Dalton - 7 years ago Reply

I have had been owned horses for over 25 years . The current horse is an 8 year old 16.1 overo paint who has a dominent personality. When I bought him I didn’t really care about his past because I was going to retrain. He though helped my decision to purdhase when he walked up to me from the other side of the ring and then proceeded to follow me around. Back at my barn I quickly found out his vices which are pretty much all when he is under saddle. As a result I decided to work with him on the ground for 7 month long reining, and ground driving. We are now proceeding undersaddle however this is where progress is slow.
What are his vices ? I will sum it up by telling you he was sold to a rodeo promotor.
He is much improved . I believe that he , as a result of his experiences, just does not trust. He though is fantastic on the ground and very social. As a result of working with him on the ground I have tapped into a wonderful relationship with him. The winter is coming and I board at a beautiful indoor so I am looking forward to learning as well as teaching him. Thanks for this opportunity . Nancy

Chris Gratton - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn
I would very much like to be considered for the Uberstreichen Exercises information. My horse’s name is Jazz. We have been doing Parelli exercises for 5 years and are working in level 3. I am based in the UK. I have also recently purchased a new horse (ex-racehorse) that I am sharing with a friend. This horse’s name is Lottie. I used to ride a lot as a teenager and got back into horses 7 years ago as an adult. I am an enthusiastic amateur not a professional. Last year I trained as a Pilates instructor, the main driver for this was to help my riding.

I am very interested in dressage and have been trying to follow some of the exercises in Karen Rohlf’s book, I also take lessons with a local instructor occasionally. I am interested in all aspects of ‘natural’ horsemanship and all have found useful information from nearly all of these types of trainer. I only discovered you about a month ago, I have since bought your Naked Liberty book and listened to an interview you gave for a radio station (i think it is called Horses in Harmony) at least 3 times. I am absolutely fascinated with your approach, I have been watching yours and Stina’s youtube videos. I love to find links between what sometimes look like quite different approaches. I felt I had come to a plateau and couldn’t move forward in my journey, I believe that having found you I can now.

I have to confess that I have bored my horse in the past!

Jazz and I fit the criteria for beginning the Uberstreichen Exercises.

Kind regards

jenny blair - 7 years ago Reply

I have the most beautiful horse who is my one in a million, he is purebred quarter horse 14.2 hh, a lovely soft horse to ride that will stand at the gate waiting to be scratched. I started him myself and have ridden him regularly, however I have had a break in the last few years due to starting a family, During this time I had beginners riding him and we have lost some of the strength we always had in our relationship, and I am trying to reestablish our connection. My limited time riding has allowed me to spend a lot of time with him at liberty, and groundwork, with a halter and bridled.
We regularly spend time riding around the farm we are on, he is the horse I choose when I just want a lovely pleasure ride at any pace and am preparing for western competition.
I have completed parelli level two and have an original level 3 schoolmaster and have 4 horses I spend time with. I have a dressage/ show jumping, pony club background as a child, and have ridden in show/ riding classes. Growing up on 3000 acres of hill country as a child I would spend all day riding when I could, as well as mustering, and riding bareback and sidesaddle.
Reading about the things you are doing with horses and riders I feel that it will help me develop my relationship and skills further to enjoy my horses and have them enjoy me.
Looking forward to beginning.
Thank you

karen reed - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn
I would like to be involved in the instruction and introduction to the uberstreichen exercises. I read your emails every week. I have owned my present horse for 4 years and have been following a natural horsemanship path with him with guidance from some very knowledgable and lovely people Sarah Kreutzer from the UK and Anna Twinney. I came to know of the waterhole rituals through them and have been working trough these with my horse maestro since Easter this year. When Maestro came to me just over 4 years ago he had been neglected and had feed, trust and dominance issues. I have learned so much through him and this continues every day. I spend a lot of time doing ground work with him to develop our relationship. I ride mostly bitless and have mixed feelings about using a bit as desired by some disciplines. I am extremely interested in any methods I can develop to help build my realtionship with maestro and help him to develop. And winter is a good time to spend time doing this as it can be very difficult to get through with restricted turn out and other restraints dictated by the weather.
I did try to join the insider circle program when it was launched but despite emails from mark was unsuccessful.
I look forward to this program. Thank you Carolyn

Leanna Kielian - 7 years ago Reply

Please consider Ama and I for your Uberstreichen Winter Course. I was an in the Box participant with Ama’s 2 year old filly “True Heart.” I have learned so much and continue listening to the talks receiving some new insight each time I review them, I continue working with the Rituals while we wait for the next Insider Circle Group to learn even more. Being able to participate in your Uberstreichen Exercises would be a most perfect opportunity for Ama and I, as she is teaching me dressage and would I hope greatly assist us in continuing the joy she and I are sharing as she guides me with her knowledge. She is a 19 year old Andalusian retired from her previous broodmare and competition career. She was high point for her breed in 1995 in dressage. I need to be really careful using her to keep her soundness stable. She is in much better physical and mental shape than when she arrived just short of 4 years ago, she weaved, didn’t track up with one leg(She has prior scar tissue on both rear legs) and was very kind but guarded with her heart. After winding up my cancer treatment my Husband John and I noticed how Ama had physically improved moving soundly around the pasture and paddock with better movement and playing with her gaits in ways she had not done since we had known her(She is a mare that if you are willing to observe and hopefully listen to, takes care of herself.) Her movement has continued to improve when ridden or in the field and she is taking this lesson attention with gusto I can only describe to those who have seen a retired star be remembered. My goal is to keep her healthy, happy and if possible learn from her as a schoolmaster what she is willing and able to teach. All who have seen her smile and comment on her enthusiasm for our little weekly lessons and her big soft eyes. We share our home with 5 horses and a little flock of sheep who graze with them. We do all own chores, it is a really great way know your friends if you are willing to stop working and listen to them and if you don’t they step on your manure fork or block you path with the wheel barrel for a scratch. The Waterhole Rituals and the Inner Circle Program has given me a dynamic creative pathway to find a way to reach out to True Ama’s filly with trust issues from an early painful and difficult to diagnose illness and resulting uncomfortable veterinary care, her attitude has improved dramatically, now we have fun positive interactions more than pinned ears. We are experiencing the Rituals one by one with all the horses now. About me BS Animal Science, retired critical care veterinary nurse, five years working as a horse handler with a hippotherapy program and lots of trail riding and horse camping experience with my now retired 29 year old warm blood sage.

Fiona Blachford - 7 years ago Reply

Yes Please…I have been eagerly awaiting more information about your Uberstreichen Exercises to help my (now) 7 yr old thoroughbred gelding. We participated in the WRIC ‘In a Box’ programme and it has made such an enormous difference to our relationship – All my friends want to know more about it too….I no longer ride (after a major fall fracturing my pelvis in 2006) but we have the most wonderful relationship on the ground – I don’t even miss riding – although, I do wonder if (maybe) I’ll get back on one day…but that will all depend on ‘George’ and his willingness to work with me some more….I’ll have to check the expression in his eyes now, to read him better. Can’t wait for the next exciting adventure Caroline and thank you so much for sharing your knowledge and wisdom with us. Fondest regards from Fiona in Australia…

Brenda de Lang - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn, I’m very much looking forward to those mysterious Uberstreichen exercises. I have read an seen most of your work.
I have had horses most of my life (I’m only 23, so that’s not very long ;)). I used to ride English but since a couple of months I’m starting ‘classical’ dressage that seems to me more anatomically sensible (involving more groundwork exercises and less rein contact).
I’m an IC student, my Dutch warmblood is called Nikita. We have a good rapport and fit the requirements, especially after the waterhole rituals. She’s got some riding issues, like balance and resistance. I used to ride her conventionally but this didn’t improve her problems so now I have started in the classical method and do a lot of ground work and loungeing to improve balance, strength and relax the topline while trotting. I am now teaching her to shoulder in while I’m walking next to her, which she now rudamentally understands. So I think we are in the right stage of training to benefit from the uberstreichen exercises.
Thank you for this opportunity.

Heidi Baumgarten - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn

I have a 10 year old Anglo-Trakehner, his name s Connor. We have a great relationship in liberty:
He walks, trots,runs, backs up, goes sideways with me. I can draw him in, send him away. He offers his feet when I ask him.
I rode him bit less for 4 years now, I am trying a Mylar bit L2 right now, I am not sure at this point what direction to take. But I am sure my horse Connor will help me to find an answer.
I have been introduced to your liberty methods about 15 years ago by Talley Wilmont and visited a clinic you had, also a long time ago. I read your “Naked Liberty” book several times and have introduced other horse people to it.
My dream is, to teach my horse basic classical dressage and I know from riding lessons in Germany, what U(e)berstreichen means: While riding in collection, you release all contact (hands, reigns) to the bit to check if your horse maintains his collection through natural balance and self carriage. Sorry, sounds a bit clumsy how I describe it.
I am extremely interested in your Uberstreichen exercises because I am at this point now, where I need some guidence and inspiration in natural collection. Connor is very “claustrophobic” and does not like contact
through bridles or bit too much. My guts tell me, these exercises might help us a lot.

Carolyn, I have met you in April when I was invited (through Talley) to participate and observe a “liberty” shoot around Solvang with several horses. These 2 days left a deep impression on me and it helped me to deepen my relationship with my horse.
Thank you so much, I will never forget…

Hertha James - 7 years ago Reply

Horse – Boots – three quarters Quarter Horse. 7 years old. Had her since 18mos. Online at Parelli level 3/4 and riding at level 3. Now widening out to study other people’s ideas.

Her first few rides were with a Parelli Professional. Otherwise we’ve done everything together ourselves. Have gone through the Waterhole Rituals from the info on your blogs. Think everyone should spend the first few weeks with a horse doing these. It would give both the person so much confidence and understanding of each other.

I focussed mainly on just riding out and forward for her first two years under saddle. Now she’s matured considerable and we are starting to do a bit more. She is lovely and light and responding to body language from the saddle as I’m learning to be clearer and more consistent. She’s an imaginative introverted horse, very sensitive and smart.

What you are offering here may be exactly the guidance we need at this point. Sometimes it is hard to be so isolated and not have a kindred spirit on the ground. But on the other hand, having to figure it out can be a bonus.

Looking forward to your tuition. Thank you for making it available even to this far flung corner of the Earth.

tine laperre - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn
I’m Tine from Belgium. I’m an insider circle student.
I’ll work with several horses and see what’ll come out.
The Lusitano used to have anxious eyes when riden, he’s also extreme sensitive be it physical as well as mental and emotional. On the ground he’s s a real play mate and his behavior changed a lot towards me. He’s accepting me, follows, goes, circles around me.. whatever. Life is fun! He hasn’t been riden since a year now.
The mare is green for as far she’s been started under saddle 6 years ago during 2 months but she hasn’t been ridden since then. Now, I can sit on her back and just follow her movements. She’s great to play with.
The quarter is used to be riden. He always comes to contact me, does companionwalk, leading from behind, doesn’t touch his food and stays around me but there’s still a lack of enthousiasm. He likes to do his things (eating and doing nothing) in my environment instead of playing. When I ask him for some more energy, he rather gets a mad but he softenes when I do continue asking him. He’s an everyday tester.
I sit a lot with the horses and they all come to stay around me.
I’m really looking forward to the next step! Thank you

Maureen Scott - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn, Yes, please add me to your group of students. I am a horseowner of 32 years, and have your book, video, and all your DVDs. My mare, Pauahi, is a Hannoverian cross, 17 years old. I am her sole owner, having bred for her. She has been ridden daily since age four. Currently, she is being transitioned to complete barefootedness, and we are doing booted handwalking at this time.

Crissea Grovenor - 7 years ago Reply

Hullo Carolyn,

Insider Circle Student. I will also be getting private telphone coaching in December.

Andre and possibly Ransom – My horses are in a new location and I have been spending a lot of time sharing territory and our connection has deepened. Both horses have good manners and there is now a good rapport when we are together. After greetings yesterday we had a deep meditation together.

I continue to keep warming up with the Waterhole Rituals and Ransom my most recent horse has started Companion Walking.

I am so grateful that you are offering us the opportunity to understand the use of the Uberstreichen Exercises – it is a very special gift.

Thank you


Suzie Cawood - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
I’ve come across your website after watching “Path of the Horse” and felt some connection in they way you are working.
I’ve started riding some 10 years ago as an adult. I’ve been trained somewhat in classical riding, but became more interested in building a bond with my horse rather than just focussing on riding, thus the interest in your methods.
Mistral is an awesome 11 year old gelding. He’s an ex racehorse with some issues with a bit, so I’ve mostly worked bitless. Apart from that he’s awesome with a very sensitive soul.
Rara is a three year old mare. Friesian x Boerperd rescue. She’s probably not ready for this yet, but I hope I can do this with her whenever she’s ready.

I’m very excited to learn more. Thanks a lot

pnaake - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,Thank you so much for offering your time and great knowledge with us for the Uberstreichen exercises. I have your book and DVD’s and was an IN a Box student with you recently. Would love to further my education with you in this respect. I gained a great deal from your teachings so far and my horse Monty and I have a great relationship thanks to the waterhole rituals.
We fit the criteria that you are asking for. I have a basis of Parelli that I have been studying for years and your programs really compliment the relationships with my horses. I also have a beautiful thouroughbred that I am rehabilitating off the track that I would love to do dressage on one day.
I also have my name down for an insider circle program in the future.
Many thanks again and hope I can participate.
Peta Naake

Leanne - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn

How wonderful of you to offer this opportunity to us.

My horses and I did the WRIC In a Box course and I have been listening again to all the calls since that course finished and finding even more information that I missed the first few times I listened to them.

My background with my horses is NH and a small amount of dressage.

My gelding Cid is ready to start these exercises. My mare Tannis – we are still working our way through the rituals (we are at leading from behind and companion walking) but she meets all the rest of the criteria you have listed.

I have a question about the halter requirements.

I normally use a rope halter for most things but I also have a selection of leather and webbing halters to choose from. The webbing halters are floppy and fitting one on a Clydie head properly will probably be difficult. If it does fit it will be tight. These particular halters of mine also slide around quite a bit on a more normal sized horses head.
Some of my leather halters should fit him but they vary from quite thick stiffish leather which will sit off his face a bit and some thinner much more flexible leather which can be fitted quite closely.
I also have a lunging cavesson but it is not that well made – the cavesson slides around on their heads more than any of my halters.
What are the specific requirements you are looking for in a non rope halter ?

Barbara Janesick - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,

I’d love to participate in the First Winter Program. I have a former reiner, an Arabian gelding, a very spirited 11 year old boy, but all business in the arena. When I purchased him about 3 and a half years ago, I had no intention of reining, but I wanted to have a buddy that I could trail ride and have fun with. Soon after Monie came into my life I worked with a dressage trainer. We even showed him at a competition and he won his first dressage class, training level two. Then I met a natural horsemanship trainer, Vincent. He has been educating Monie in lateral work, and exposing him to all kinds of trail adversities, and teaching him containment so that he is less reactionary to the “big spooks… big cats” out on the trail. And he has improved greatly. He has had bouts of gassy colic and ulcers. And through trial and experiment I’ve found that three feedings of alflafa a day has calmed his tummy down, and he is happier boy. Today Vincent told me about your Winter program and I want to become one of your on-line students. I’ve read your book, Naked Liberty, which I enjoyed immensely. I’m eager to get started, and learn more of your wonderful approach to equine harmony.

Best regards,

Barbara Janesick and Monie

sheila - 7 years ago Reply

greetings from Langley, BC, Canada
I’m 52, have been following your blog for about 1&1/2 yrs, have the DVD, and have learned so much about energy from you, Carolyn. I would really really love to learn your Uberstreichen exercises!! I live on 16 acres with 2 of my own mares, and a few boarders. I school 3rd level dressage with Girl, my 14.2hh 21 yr old mix breed rescued pony mare,(welsh? morgan?) who has been with me for 11 yrs. we have Evented, done jumpers, (3’9″) and dressage in shows, do drag fox-hunting locally (no fox!!) and have lived and worked on a cattle ranch for 7 yrs, lots of back country riding. we can tick off most of the requirements you’ve listed, incl. ride bareback with halter/lead rope, I can lead from behind ( I learned that from the herd!) This mare had serious abandonment issues and confinement issues, she could not be tied to anything, and would go up and over backwards if any one insensitively grabbed her halter, bridle, or lead rope, or if she was held by insensitive hands on her reins. It’s taken years to help her become comfortable with bit contact, and we’ve done lots of “showing her the way down” lengthening her neck and helping her to engage the abdominals so the hind legs can engage more and now she can have beautiful self-carriage. The teacher I train with is a deeply spiritual person and is completely devoted to liberation and self-carriage of the horse and rider, she rides and trains to Grand-Prix level, and she feels that this little mare is extremely special: her intelligence, talent, and willingness to try, and to learn, despite her alpha-ness and initial fearfulness. However, what I would love to do, is connect with this mare on a heart level. she’s totally alpha, and a warrior, and we re- negotiate our positions daily with body language. She is stand-offish with horses and people. I know that ideally we should stop riding while we develop the bond in the 1st few rituals, but I don’t know if I could do that yet. I am completely addicted to the spirtual practice I experience when I ride!!! I know I could never NOT live with my horses and other animals, I do Massage Therapy and healing work in my home, so I get to stay home on the farm all day!
Also, next door to us, there’s a 4 yr old 1/4 horse gelding who I started backing this year, he accepted everything very easily and learned quickly, but does not transfer his understanding to being on his back, and he shows alot of fear and un-predictable behaviour, so I didn’t continue with him. I’ve known him since he was born, he’s had a lovely up-bringing with his herd, so I don’t understand where his fear and apprehension come from. I’m sure the Uberstriechen exercises will be helpful for him, too, and for me to understand him more??
thank you for generously offering your wisdom and knowledge, Carolyn, I am so excited to connect with you and all of the others!!

Constance Funk - 7 years ago Reply

Hello Carolyn,
I am delighted to have the privilege to continue studying with you with this series. It will be of great benefit to me as I continue to study your Waterhole Rituals and apply them to all I do with my mares, Chasta and Gaela and my pony, Max. He is simply fascinated with liberty play and a human involved! I participated in the Rituals in a Box and will be involved when you resume the Insiders Program. I have studied Parelli and am learning also from Debra Olson Daniels. I am extremely interested in these exercises to help us stay in shape, connect and strengthen our bond on every level. It is the perfect program for heading into winter and I am , as always, extraordinarily grateful to you for offering this information and wisdom. I will be your first student to purchase the DVD of these when you make that, too.
Many blessings to you for making this possible–a true gift of Thanksgiving!
Connie Funk

Milette - 7 years ago Reply

Kona and I are ready to join/continue our work with your methods. I participated in the Waterhole Ritals Insider Circle working two horses. My gelding Kona 6yr old Friesian x Haflinger and Cydney yearly Friesian filly. The gelding is ready to move forward in his learning and this sounds great.

Petra Z. McGowan - 7 years ago Reply

Hello Carolyn,

I would love to be able to participate. I have 4 year old filly arab x percheron and TB x trakehner 5 year old gelding. We do training level dressage, go for hacks, play and just hang out.

Thank you for your generosity!

Elaine Clift - 7 years ago Reply

I was a pro harness groom for many years, then went on to run a large breeding and injury turn out facility. I had roughly 60 horses and ponies that were also kept in 20 acre “paddocks” with run in shelters, that were handled very little – only when needed, and for daily health checks. When I first watched the Waterhole Rituals, I realized that many of the things I’d learned were there but pulled together in a meaningful way, then continued on.

I’ve used the WHR very succesfully with a pony that I own that has suffered severe abuse. We are now having conversations, he is happy to see me, and after a year of slow but steady work I can finally touch his nose and pat his head while he’s loose in the field. WHR was a huge breakthrough for him and I, we finally had a way to begin communication.

I also have a 14 yr old draft horse that I ride, that has some baggage as well. He and I are a team though, I feel very safe on his back and he looks to me when he’s not sure. I’d like to continue improving our riding, we have plenty to learn.

All in all, I have over 20 years in horses, with roughly half of that as a full time pro, making my living with horses. After leaving the track I mostly dealt with severe injuries, mares and foals, and horses that were mentally or emotionally damaged and could no longer compete – not your run of the mill experiences, but I am thankful for all they taught me.

Beth Schang - 7 years ago Reply

How wonderful ! ! Yes, please sign me and Cookie up to learn the uberstreichen exercises. Twice I’ve read your book, Naked Liberty, and watched your DVD; I thoroughly enjoy and learn so much from reading your blog, and the stories, comments, questions and insights of your community of students. I love what I am learning about real communication with horses (and I’m eager to participate in your next Insider’s Circle when next you offer it). I grew up with horses – participated in 4-H and Pony Club, and attended the Potomac Horse Center’s “Horsemaster” course years and years ago; I, unfortunately, had to leave horses for an extended period of time to raise my children – economics 🙂 I joyfully come home to horses five years ago when Cookie, my now 10 yo paint draft cross mare entered my life. Your essay on “The Eye of Eagles” was especially poignant for me – for more than anything, it was the “look” Cookie gave me when we first met, her direct eye-contact look that said “so There You are!” Cookie, I was told, has had 90 days of professional training. The gal I bought her from wouldn’t let me canter her, and very nearly refused to sell her to me on the grounds that I might get hurt (I did share with her that I hadn’t ridden in some 25 years). I didn’t ride Cookie for the first four months after getting her, preferring to simply spend quiet time becoming acquainted and we were on no one’s timetable but our own. Without knowing it, I think we were doing our version of “companion walking”. We share between 2 to 4 hours nearly every day together playing, grazing and hanging out; when I ride her, we go bitless and usually bareback . Cookie is pastured with some 35 other horses on about 50 acres, and she will leave them to come in to me when she sees my car approaching, or hears me hollaring for her; she has good ground manners; accepts my touch all over, holds her feet up without leaning, accepts fly spray, is very polite in asking for and taking treats; I can send her away and have her come back – she’s willing, but she walks 🙂 I am eager for new experiences to share with Cookie that will grow our bond and communication. Thank you so very much for your generosity ! !

Marty Head - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

I’ve been following your blog for several months. My mare and I have been playing with the Waterhole Rituals. She’s a 15 year old foundation Morgan who has been taught to drive as well as under saddle. Mandy became my first horse four years ago this Christmas. She’s my teacher and my partner.

After reading a book by Monty Roberts years ago, I experimented with approach and retreat techniques on wild animals. First with deer, then a moose. Even a bear. Then I spent enough time with feral horses to be accepted by a few bands. Eventually I discovered a Morgan farm and spent every weekend for a year hanging out with the herd of 33, learning to be a horse.

Soon after, I bought Mandy and we studied Parelli. Meanwhile I learned to ride Mandy in rugged mountain terrain. My education moved on to endurance riding. It’s the sport we were born for. To care for her as an athlete, I educated myself on nutrition and metabolics. Next, I completed coursework in balancing the horse physically and energetically. Meanwhile, Mandy moved to another farm where she eventually rose to be the lead horse of the herd of 36.

My interest is to study a structured Method for cueing for collection. Now that I know how to help my horse be physically balanced, I want to better understand collection and hindquarter engagement. I’m seeking a way to help Mandy move like a hovercraft when we ride.


Christian Gundermann - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn,

I would like to sign up for this exciting continuation of our Waterhole Ritual journey with you in the Insider Circle.

I will be participating with my black PercheronX mare Lili (you have seen many videos of us during the WRIC). Lili is now 8 1/2 years old. She came to me when she was 6, and had no riding training. She had some basic driving training. I started her based on Parelli’s methods. She is a fearful horse who tends to freeze and get “stuck” (and eventually explode), but is also deeply bonding with me, so we have seen a lot of progress, especially since early in 2009 we came across your Waterhole Rituals and they immediately became to us like second nature. We have since also become more interested in dressage work. Lili intensely dislikes bits, and after I attempted getting her used to a very gentle snaffle and she made her preference known, I have ridden her bitless. We are currently working in a simple side-pull after experimenting both with rope-halter hackamores and various bitless bridles. I am very interested in progressing further on our journey toward self-carriage, forwardness, and lightness. We have also done some bridleless riding since starting with the Waterhole Rituals over the summer.

Thank you so much for offering this…I couldn’t have hoped for anything more exciting!


Mary House - 7 years ago Reply

I would love to participate in this, I have an 8 year old Andalusian x warmblood mare called Sasha. She is superbly responsive, willing and eager to please, but easily upset if I am strong with her, I have learnt over the years that she is reading my thoughts and I now really only have to think what I want her to do. Our ground work can be magnificent! The riding is coming along slowly. I have ridden for the last 50 odd years and she is my fifth horse, I still have three other retired horses on my property living out their remaining years gracefully. Sasha will offer shoulder in on line, we are just beginning to play with half pass. I ride her in a bit only becasue I have found that being so sensitive we are able to respond to each other with far more subtlety than in a halter. She is wearing a mylor bit, level 3, the only bit that she will allow her tongue to rest on.

Debbie Antolak - 7 years ago Reply

Hi, I would love to join in on this course for the winter. I have been riding all my life but didn’t get horses until I was 40. Now 10 years later I have 2 horses. The one I would like to use for these exercises is a 5 yr old Appaloosa (Joker) that I started from scratch about a year and a half ago, using Parelli techniques. He is doing well and we have a wonderful relationship, but I am ready to further his education. He has excellent ground manners and fits the requirements you set forth.
I must admit I am new to your studies so do not know a lot yet (that will change over the next few days as I will be doing some intense research and reading…I wanted to make sure I got signed up first), but what you describe is the exact next step I am wanting.
I have had Joker under saddle for about a year, he is light and responsive but still somewhat gangly, transitions are sloppy and he is not yet gathering himself into a nice shape. I know this is a lot to ask for from a youngster but we are really just at the beginning of our journey. I look forward to working on these exercises during the cold months ahead.

Erin Rodriguez - 7 years ago Reply

Hi, I am Erin Rodriguez, I’ve had horses for eight years as a youngster and took a 15 year break and have had my current 13 year old arabian mare for three years. We have learned and utilized successfully all the whr’s. Sasha is a laid back mostly willing horse and she and I have a great relationship where she’ll leave the herd to come be with me. She and I trail ride occasionally, or try an activity such as ranch sorting or team penning, but typically I go see her twice or three times a week and we connect through the whr (organically ie without a premeditated plan!), then either ride or perhaps not! I have been looking forward to learning more on the uberstreichen to help my horse become more flexible and learn to use her body better.

Maureen - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
I can’t wait to begin this training with my 14 year old 17h warmblood. I have always used classical training methods and have lots of fun…I hope he does too. I’m always ready to learn something new and look forward to taking part.
Thank you

Patty Halbeck - 7 years ago Reply

Yes, I would like to participate in this program! I was a WHRIC student. My current horses are two miniature mares. We have moved through the WHR and are now comfortable doing Leading from Behind, Companion Walking, and some Go Trot and Come Back. We have just started work in a bridle doing ground driving. I am using a bitless bridle and they are quite happy and responsive with it. It was the easiest transition imaginable going from Leading from Behind to driving in the bridle. it was almost as if there was no difference and I didn’t have to teach them anything. We now go for “driving walks” in the woods and in all kinds of interesting places. My interest in the uberstreichen exercises comes from a desire to teach them to use their bodies efficiently and to collect when being driven. Though I do not ride them since they are small, I think we will be able to participate fully in the program since it is ground work, and it will benefit us tremendously. I hope that you will accept us as students in this program. Thank you!

Evelyn McKelvie - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn, I would love to be a participant in this. I have been trying to register for your training online since July. Most recently I registered for yout your Water Rituals in a box trainng but it was cancelled. I have read your book, Naked Liberty, and have been a folllower of your blog since I discovered it last year.

I have been riding for 11 years. I have been working on training horses using the Chris Irwin approach which is excellent body language training for 3.5 years.

My horse is an old thoroughbred named Easter’s Hurricane – Harold is his barn name. He was at the track until he was 7 then showed up in a dressage and hunter/jumper school about 8 years later. I was given him 3 years ago after I worked with him for 5 years as a leasor.

When I met him he was semi-autistic, unrespsonsive to people and, while he was not dangerous and would cooperate as a school horse, he was so withdrawn no-one wanted to ride him very much. Over the course of 2 winters (2003-2004) he tore his front check ligaments and I rehabbed him so that he now goes beautifully on the flat but does not jump. I have brought him out of his shell and moved him to a nicer facility. He loves people now and we have a strong bond. I have used your Waterhole rituals with him and we do companion walking. We don’t yet do ‘go away and come back’. Haven’t tried that yet. He is 25 and still going strong. I am 60 and just getting started! I look forward to learning from you.

Dan Cooksey - 7 years ago Reply

Dan Cooksey, and I’m new to your method. My horse is Morgunn, a 10 year old Icelandic Horse gelding. His ground manners are excellent and I can do all the things with him that you mentioned. He was born and raised here in Corrales, New Mexico and trained initially by a professional trainer. I bought him when he was 6 and I continued to work with this trainer off and on for the first two years. He’s good on the longe line and works well in the round pen. His biggest issue is he gets excited when he’s around other horses. The only horse he’s with on a constant basis is Sugar, my wife’s Rocky Mountain Horse in our back lot. There are no other horses around us and we rarely encounter them when we ride so he loves to see other horses. Other than that he’s a well-mannered horse. I know there’s a lot I still don’t know about horses and I can certainly learn a lot about being a better rider. I’m looking forward to your series.

mitzi - 7 years ago Reply

Oh Carolyn 🙂
I am so excited to learn the Uberstreichens !!
Please sign me up …I was an Insiders Circle student last summer and how the relationship w/ my Friesian has bloomed w/ the WHR’s. We share Territory each day and do lots of companion walking and trotting , leading from behind & are now riding bridleless.
I can’t wait to hear more about these !! Thanks so much again for all you do and sharing your wisdom w/ horses with us all !!

Ritambhara Tyson - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn, I have a 4 year old icelandic gelding named Sonny. He is my second horse and I still have my first horse, CHinook, an appaloosa who is now 28 years old. Chinook is pretty much retired now , so my work will be with Sonny. I have your dvd of the waterhole rituals and have done and am continuing doing them. Sonny is very social, loves to be with me and will companion walk , trot and stop. He is respectful of my space and is a fun little guy. I have ridden him ,maybe 10 times, but would rather work him more on the ground. Your Uber excersises seem like just the right next step for us. A am a big fan of you and your method and wish I lived closer to you so I could meet you in person. Thank you for all your time.


barbara langhorn - 7 years ago Reply

I am starting back with horses after any years without. I previously rode for several years, pony club when young etc. I have no experience in dressage as such.
Last year I got “Angel” a 12 yo TB Mare. I bought her as a broodmare for her temperament, looks and conformation (to breed my ideal horse), but discovered that she is a wonderful mount, light and responsive to the slightest aid, dressage training obvious.
All I know about her training is that she has raced as a 4 yo, she then was retrained and has done some hacking, jumping, dressage. I searched online and found out that Angel had competed with two different riders in preliminary through to elementary levels dressage tests from 2004-2005.

Donna Hughes - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carol

I’m very interested in participating in your first annual winter program. I’ve been reading your posts with great interest. I’ve had horses and been riding and training for over 25 years and still feel there is much to learn. I continue to better my relationship with each of my horses every day.

My continual goal is to ride them in the most comfortable, balanced frame possible and so I would love to learn the Uberstreichen Exercises.

I’m not sure yet which particular horse I will use for the program. I most likely will be doing the exercises with several of them. I’ve had four of them since birth and the other four for over 16 years so I am quite comfortable with each. I will have a better idea which horse(s) I will use once we start. I hope this is acceptable. Thanks.


Karen Clouston - 7 years ago Reply

Carolyn, I am very interested in learning the Uberstreichen exercises. I purchased your Waterhole Rituals dvd through Path of the Horse special offer. I have a wonderful relationship with my 5 year old half Andalusian gelding, Tamarack. We do most of our ground work at liberty or in a neck rope and I ride bitless. He is extremely light and responsive, but my riding is by no means perfect. Although I have been riding for nearly 45 years, it has only been in the last three years or so that I began to re-educate myself in both training and riding and have chosen a more classical (albeit bitless) approach. My riding is improving…slowly.

I was intrigued with your Uberstreichen exercises since I first heard about them, and wondered how they may or may not differ from the classical flexion exercises. Since you are known for your liberty work, I am certain I will be learning something very timely and valuable for Tamarack and myself.

I am very keen to learn a way to ask Tam for more forward energy without causing resistance or hesitation, and particularly moving from collected to extended gaits smoothly while keeping him balanced and in a confident frame of mind – not feeling pressured or pushed. We have some issues with this both on the ground and in the saddle so it is a hole I would dearly love to fill!

Thank you so much for the offer of sharing the Uberstreichen exercises.

janethagen - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

I participated in the first WHRIC program and would love to learn more about anything you are willing to share with us. The Uberstreichen Exercises sound like the perfect thing for me to start working on Gabby with. She is a draft cross mare who we purchased from my daughter’s 82 year old Dutch dressage instructor. He raised her from a baby and she’s now 16 years old, and although she was raised in a very natural environment in a herd, she was trained in what I consider very classical dressage. She was not trained in a rollkur fashion thankfully. My daughter is no longer taking dressage lessons so I’ve been trail riding Gabby, and I have never ridden a horse that was so heavy on the bit (if that’s the way to describe it since I’m not a dressage rider). I’ve taken away the flash nose band and I have a Dr. Cook bitless bridle that I’d love to start riding her in. Will the Uberstriechen help her to become lighter and not so heavy in my hands? She’s very forward moving, and on the trail with her snaffle bit she can really give my arms a workout! I’ve been letting her walk and trot on the trails “not on the bit” so she can learn what that feels like as I’m starting to think she’s only been ridden “on the bit”. My only dressage experience is watching my daughter’s lessons for the last couple of years, but I have almost a lifetime of trail riding experience. We have four horses who are naturally boarded at our place, and I have alot of hands on horse care experience including 5 years of professional hoof trimming most recently as an AHA certified trimmer (although I’m retired from that now). I have access to a beautiful indoor heated arena to ride in this winter, and I’d love to be included in this online instruction. Gabby can be safely ridden with a halter and lead rope, and also can be ridden bareback.

Nicole - 7 years ago Reply

Hello Carolyn!

I am THRILLED to have the opportunity to learn your uberstricten exercises. I feel like I’ve been TEASED to death with hints here and there, but are we ever ready for new toys to play with!!

I participated in the WRIC, and before they were available to me, I read your book and watched your DVD’s and anything I could find on Youtube to practice everything with my new mare, Solana. She’s my darling palomino 1/2 andalusian social butterfly! I got her as an untouched 5 year old last September and have never started a horse from scratch and really wanted to develop a solid relationship built on mutual trust and leadership. Your method was a PERFECT match!

Currently, we use nearly all the rituals every day, and play a LOT of liberty games and do a lot of liberty exercises. I think I ride 1 out of ever 3-4 times I visit with her. My own riding skills are moderate, but I can tell how nice a job I’m doing with her when other, more skilled riders get on her… SHE’S FANTASTIC! Soft, supple, responsive, light, tons of self-carriage, has a billion buttons that are all accessible (again, to those who know how to ride well… I’m just starting to tap into that with my own riding).

My desire for learning the Uberstrichten excercises is to further refine and advance my liberty work with her, and our under-saddle times too! And to do something DIFFERENT than our typical routine.

Can’t wait!!

Debi Olson - 7 years ago Reply

I would love to be included and learn more. I was unable to take the “In the Box ” class because it was canceled. But am trying the WRIC on my own. But my 9 year old mare is responding well.She has never been ridden, so am hopeing to start her right. Blessings to all.

Andrea Schwiegel - 7 years ago Reply

Hello Carolyn,
I would love to be included in this program. I have read “Naked Liberty” and am going to order your DVD “Waterhole Rituals”. For a couple of months or more I have been following and studying your blog with great enthusiasm. As I am living in Italy I’m looking forward to attend a clinic in Italy with Alessandra Deerinck in summer on your method. In the meantime I ‘m trying to work with my ex-racehorse Clarence by myself with body-language and am very glad to see the first success. Every day our bond gets stronger and Clarence teaches me what’s really important in life and I’m so very grateful to her. The less I expect from her the more wonderful things happen. We share territory, experience magnetism, companion-walking, walking on the long rope, leading from behind – every day a little bit more. Clarence in her past seems not to have been treated too well, I don’t know her story, but when I found her she was starving, a skeleton. after a year and a half now She’s well again, very beautiful and since I’ve been learning to communicate in her language with her she’s more and more interacting with me and more collaborative. The problem is when you ask her to trot or gallop something makes “click” in her brain and she would not stop, like those toys you wind up and that are spinning around and around. She needs to learn that she can trot and canter in a relaxed way, so I think the Ueberstreichen exercises will help her to see that she can do a lot of other things with her body than just run.
Thank you always for everything you are sharing with us.
Greetings from Italy.

deborah johnson - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn, I am one of your insider circle students, and have been looking forward to finding out a lot more about the Uber exercises! Eclipse is doing really well, and this is great timing for us. I was wondering how I would keep her mind engaged, and things moving in a forward direction this winter. The aloof fox trotter I began with this spring, has turned into the love of my life, and the water hole rituals were what brought us together. I have no idea what uberstreichen exercises are, but if they are anything like the whr’s, they will be life changing. Deb and Eclipse

Ruella - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn! I’m so excited to have the opportunity to continue my studies with you! My Paint gelding, Renaissance Painter (Renn) and I are Insider Circle partners with you, and will continue the journey. He got home from the trainer (I told you about him and his study of your work) a month ago, and he is doing wonderful things for me. We are having a daily ride, with some tasks for him (barrel patterns, putting his foot or nose on marks, rollbacks, etc.). He is no longer spooky, and is flexing his neck nicely in a one-rein stop. I ride in a halter, and sometimes a snaffle bit. I also plan to do these exercises with my Arabian mare, Kira. Your advice about Kira has meant the world to us. She was a rescue horse, and I am continuing relationship-building. I don’t plan to ride Kira. And of course there’s Jenny, my little donkey we discussed on one of the WRIC calls. When she sees the horses doing something new, I’m sure she will want to do it. This may be a challenge, as she doesn’t have much of a neck to arch, but it’s the thought that counts in the world of donkeys! Thank you again, Carolyn, for giving my little herd and me the opportunity to continue working with you!

Marianne Spitzform - 7 years ago Reply

Please include me in the class. I rode hunt seat equitation as a child and young adult. After my gelding died in 1993 I was away from horses until four years ago. Since then I have been soaking in ‘natural’ and ‘alternative’ methods that focus on the relationship we have with horses. Of course I used your Waterhole Rituals, through the DVD as part of my learning. The mare I will work with is named Rhapsody, a Shagya Arabian, 15 yrs old, formerly owned and trained by an advanced Pony Clubber. Rhap is a generous and kind soul prone to carry a great deal of tension in her neck and has a history of an old stifle injury in her right hind. She is very expressive and tells me when she is uncomfortable or in pain. Currently she is sound during ground work and light riding. I look forward to sharing this experience!


Michelle Twohig - 7 years ago Reply

I’m in the Insider Circle via the “In a Box” route. When I started the course, my 5-yr old rescue horse, Dodger, had become too challenging and dominant for me to handle and I had just put him in training for the summer (about an hour away from where I live). I relished listening to all of the Waterhole Ritual Insider Circle calls while driving over and back to see him every week, and looked forward to being able to start them with Dodger. All we accomplished while he was in training were the first two rituals due to restrictions at the facility about where I could place his food.

But a little history how we got there…I became a first-time horse owner when I rescued Dodger when he was turning 3. He was wasting away down the road from where I live in knee-deep mud with no shelter in an area not large enough for a dog. I had never owned a horse before but I walked by him often, and talked to him, and firmly believe he asked me to “get him out of there.” I later learned he’d been orphaned at 5 weeks of age and raised in a very desensitizing environment for a horse, while being completely isolated from any other horse for 2 years. After he was gelded, he was put in a larger (yet still completely muddy) area with several mares who kept him from the single pile of food by, to my untrained eye, trying to kill him. He was wasting away, with his hip and ribs protruding. If I’d known to suggest to his owners that they consider putting out more piles of hay than there were horses, my life may’ve taken a different course. As it was, my only known solution was to find a local horse trainer with a hat and a presence that meant business, to walk up to their door and ask how much money they wanted for the skinny, young one. That’s how I became a horse owner.

Although he was never mean and never pinned his ears, I quickly learned he viewed humans as play things. And he used his mouth to play. What I didn’t know was that he would not respond to normal training methods like most horses would, almost as if he was missing all normal prey animal instincts. He had been raised around so many torn, flapping tarps, dirt bikes and refuse that he was just naturally, extremely desensitized. Because I was so green, I didn’t know what “normal” horse behavior looked like, and inadvertently made his ground manners even worse. Although he quickly and calmly accepted a saddle and rider, since neither he nor I knew the proper progression of cues in the saddle, we stood around a lot. The more we did that, the more I ingrained his all-brake-and-no-gas-pedal lifestyle.

Fast forward 2 years: First trainer gives up after getting him “broke to ride” saying Dodger doesn’t respond to training like a normal horse. Trainer doesn’t have a high opinion of Paints to begin with and prefers gaited horses. I find another trainer who specializes in Paints and emotionally-challenged ones at that. Soon after he enters training with new trainer, I enroll in the Insider Circle. While driving to see him one weekend I hear Carolyn say the Waterhole Rituals can help instill normal horse instincts in a horse that is missing them. How happy, at this point, do you think I am?

Since his training this summer, in which Dodger learned what respect for humans looked like and how to connect his brain to his feet, I’ve been able to go through all the rituals with wonderful success although moving him off any type of food requires concerted effort. Needless to say, he is extremely motivated by a reward of food, and with carrots as rewards, we’ve been able to do amazing things together on the ground at liberty–most recently jumping over a couple of jumps in succession, trot around and do it again. He backs up as far as I want on just a word cue then stands still while I walk across the width of the arena to get his carrot (extremely hard for him to wait for me to do that!). Then I ask him to walk sweetly up to me and stop 4 feet away while I hold the carrot out to him. He stretches his neck out to retrieve it and waits, ears up, to see what I want him to do for the next carrot. He seems to love our time together, is curious, still playful yet respectful. And, if something does manage to scare him (e.g., big limb falling on metal arena roof in wind), he runs to stand beside me. He stops when I stop, he lets me put his feet back down gently where I want them after cleaning. He backs up when I back up.

His training taught him (and me) to have him trot around me on a 14′ lead, with me twirling the end for energy when needed; I get great “hips over” action and a back-up, then change direction. In the bridle, from the ground, he’s learned to “give and hold” to both direct and indirect rein pressure, curving his neck to the side while trotting around my hand on the ground, ending in a hips over and back-up. Depending on the day, he may start out bracy, or he may be soft. He frustrates easily and needs lots of “good boys” and moments of rest with pets to know he’s doing it right. I don’t like to give him carrots when he’s in a bridle. It’s not his favorite exercise.

My goal for him is just to be a wonderful trail horse. Our graduation from his training this summer was a back country trail ride (after a few simple rides) and he was stellar! He ignores other horses busy being jiggy, nutso, or inclined to run ahead. I guess that’s one advantage of not learning how to be a horse from another horse!

Anyway, I hope that’s what you wanted to know, Carolyn. I’m all ears for the Uberstreichen Exercises!

Michelle Twohig

Evergreen - 7 years ago Reply

Thank you for offering this Carolyn. Yes, I want to participate in the Uberstreichen Exercises.
I was in the first Insider’s Circle program and it was a great experience.
I have three horses I worked the rituals with, and all three made good progress. The one I will use to work with the Uberstreichen is my mare, Reina. She is wonderful to work with on the ground, will do nice companion walking and I can to the things you mentioned. The reason I will use her is that under saddle she has issues which I believe stem from an abusive training early in life. It took me a full year after I got her to get her comfortable in a snaffle bit and bridle.
I think using these new exercises will help me bring the wonderful connection we have on the ground from your rituals, to help with alleviating her discomfort in riding.
And its a wonderful thing to be able to do over winter!

Sandra Madrigal - 7 years ago Reply

I would like to participate in the exercises. My horse experience really began last year when I first talked to you over the phone about my then out of control and angry horse Phoenix, at that point you mentioned feeling that I was not ready to be safely coached by you over the phone due to my lack of experience and the type of horse I was describing. But I stuck to figuring out how to get him to understand I was trying to be his friend; I kept reading your book, saw the videos multiple times and kept reading the blogs; now he is the sweetest horse he’s like a dog to me but still does not like other people, he changed his trying to bite me to licking my hands and my arm which I told him was okay, the only thing he is lacking is a bit of motivation or desire to please, but he is still young only a 2 and a half year old. If you think that such a young horse could benefit from these exercises I would like to join in but not with Phoenix, he takes everything very slow. I would like to do it with my other horse Gracie who is the polar opposite and super easy to work with, even though she is the same age. She learns very very fast and she meets all the requirements you mentioned above. Gracie is very good with her manners and does some tricks also, last one learned was to lay down, no ropes or harshness, it took about 4 months of following her when she was going to lay down and saying “lay down, good girl” and a cookie or a scratch, still working on Phoenix learning this, he is much slower learning because he has a 10 second attention span. I am very interested in anything you have to teach because after those 3 short phone calls we had, my relationship with my horse changed completely for the better and has only gotten even better since.

Katharine - 7 years ago Reply


I would love to be included in this, please add me to the list too. I was part of the first “In the Box” program that you did over the summer. I have been curious about the Uberstreichen Exercises since then.


Bill Scott - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn

I took your last In-The-Box Waterhole Rituals and have been using your methods on my TWH’s, 7 of them. I must say Your Waterhole Rituals works on all of them from the young ones to the 21 year old. I do all of the training and farrier work on my horses. I’m very much against the Big Lick and the soring that goes on in the TWH world. The only reason I join and belong to TWEBA is to register my foals.
I have seen the Uberstreichen Exercises on your blog and have wondered what in was, so I’m happy to see your going to have a class on it. I use Natural Horsemanship, Classical Dressage and now your methods to train my horses. I look foreword to learning about your Uberstreichen Exercises.

Bill Scott

Suzanne Martin - 7 years ago Reply


I would love to be included in this – PLEASE add me to this list. I was part of the first “In the Box” program that you did a few months back and loved how it improved my already great relationship with my 3 horses (Gabby – 20 yr olds TB, Kiss – 9 yr old Dutch Warmblood/TB cross & Chip – 5 yr old QH.). I am a Parelli L3 gradute and have been a student of the horse for the majority of my life. What I love the most about your Liberty Training is that the horse gets to have a say, a choice about working with us or not, there isn’t any force, no round pen (I work with them in my pasture 5.25 acres). ANd when they choose to be with us and participate it is the most amazing feeling in the world. Would love to learn about your ubersteinchen exercises and feel that it would be the icing on the cake to have this knowledge.


Laura - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
Please add me to the list… I have shared with you things about Oreo my KWPN 3.5 year old colt – I have not backed him yet and am looking forward to working these exercises before I back him next Spring – ! Working with the waterhole rituals has show me how “light” this big guy can be!! Hopefully can take that to his riding as well through your good instruction. Although we still have stubborn issues – sometimes I have trouble determining if he is just being a brat or actually confused about what I’m asking of him… I think you call that being locked – he can do something wonderful consistently then all of the sudden it’s like he doesn’t know what I’m asking… He can learn how to smile on command and open a gate in 10 minutes (and doesn’t forget that for a treat) – but when I ask him to step off on the lunge line he looks at me like I’m from mars!!! I know – he knows better…do you work slower with stubborn ones? I think partly he is bored so I’m looking forward to these exercises to add something new to our relationship. Thanks for sharing! Laura

Anne Porteus - 7 years ago Reply

I 1/2 own a 14 year old Holsteiner mare that I ride, practicing dressage. I met you @ Ariana Strozzi’s EGE conference a few years ago. I was one of her assistants. I have used some of your methods to bond better and it is working very well. It would be even better to learn in person, but that is not in the cards right now. I would like to learn your 10 Uberstreichen Exercises, very much. Please add me to your list, Thanks, Anne.

Denise Rodriguez Santana - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn, I would LOVE to sign up too. This sounds just perfect for my warmblood Marinero. We were doing regular dressage classes until the summer when I made a huge leap to go barefoot. We’ve made good slow progress but do not feel ready to start classes quite yet due to transitioning from long heels. (another story!)
We already play with some simple flexion exercises to his sides and between his legs, and can back up 10 steps so I would love to extend our repertoire of movements (at liberty) to support him and keep him in optimum health.
We spend alot of time sharing territory and exploring ‘intentions’. Living here in Spain its great to have your regular blogs to keep me grounded. I’m happy to bear the title of being ‘abit different’ when my aspirations come from a method of developing a magnetic connection with true relationships being at he heart of training. THANKYOU for allowing me to partake in this journey so far.
Kind regards

Ivy Schexnayder - 7 years ago Reply


Hi. I am very interested in your exercises. I have read your book and watched your dvd, waterhole rituals. I am very impressed with how you communicate with your horses.

I would be working with my 5 year old quarter horse/paint cross. I have done all the training on him. I have been working on natural dressage with him. He has been doing very well. We have even been working on developing the passage at liberty!


Ivy Schexnayder

inge - 7 years ago Reply

sounds interesting, please sign me in.
i have and still following the insider circle group.
although i dont post often, due to lack of time. But always listen to the calls.

Elaine butler - 7 years ago Reply

Dear Carolyn, this sounds perfect. I have a horse of mixed Dutch breeding with strong Gelderlander carriage driving lines, so his neck tends to tense upwards and backwards. He is a high energy horse and finds it hard to let go and relax fully over his back. I do some mobility stretches which Dr. Hilary Clayton describes. These have helped, but I’m sure there is a lot more I could be trying.

I look forward to hearing about your techniques.


Liz Folb - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

Been wanting to learn these exercises- perfect timing.
You and I have worked together a couple of times at your ranch-with your horses. We have also had some discussions about meditation. (Its going great!)
My mare is a 13 yr old Swedish warmblood.
I am bringing her back to work after an injury (a fall +other)
I am riding her bareback lightly now after 6 months of no riding with ground work only and in-hand mountain hikes to keep her limber. None of my saddles fit her now so hence the bareback riding. (anyone looking for a very nice Albion or Schleese dressage saddle 17″ or a Crates western saddle 15.5″? please let me know)
Been following your blog since inception.
All the best.

Farah - 7 years ago Reply

Sign me up Carolyn! I don’t know if you need me to recap all the my info, but I will if you want. It will be good for me to go over these again even though we have. And we touched on them in WRIC. I will be using Mercury who you know. He is 5 and schooling first level dressage. I will also be using my mare Phoenix who is 5 and at Training Level in her dressage. I am bringing her back from an injury and thinking this will add to my PT program I am doing with her to get her back to 100%. As always I am interested in anything you have to teach me. Your work has impacted me deeply and profoundly. Thanks for doing this!

Farah DeJohnette

Nancy Proulx - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,
Could you please add me to the list for your class. This sounds right up my ally. I would love to encorporate these into my training methods. I have followed along with your blog and work, unfortunately unable to get into the inside circle program because it filled so fast. My horse Charisma will be my partner she is a Morgan. I have a lot of history with Arabians and Morgan horses in the show ring. About ten Years ago Charisma forced me to re evaluate some of my training techniques . Bringing me through a transformation that has allowed the most special partnership to emerge through the both of us. I’m just trying to do my part to inspire others to this level of connection (the ribbons have always come easy to me , but now if people really look joy eminates through us and hopefully helps heal the show world). It’s funny I know I’m there, but recalling the steps is the next place I need to be to inspire others. I have always resonated with the ubersteinchen work you talk about. I appreciate this opportuntiy

Regina Walter - 7 years ago Reply

Hi! I am 56 yrs old and have about 45 yrs with horses. Although I have been practicing “natural” horsemenship the past 20 yrs, I find myself searching a better relationship with my horses. Particularly my 3yr old Tenn Walker, Micah. I want to things better with him and want a special partnership.He is well started and ridden on trails, lots of groundwork since he was a weanling. Very light and responsive.

I also have a 16 yr old (Moon Dance, Fox Trotter/Saddlebred cross) since his birth. I discovered you about a month ago, read Naked Liberty, have the Waterhole Rituals dvd. I have been working on a few small things so far such as feeding. It’s mine til I give it to you which is working well with my 16 yr old who always pins his ears at meals. Also working on “magnetism”. I do work full time so sometimes time is limited, but I am so so wanting to learn more about your method. I am in Washington State and would never be able to visit you for a clinic. I am excited to do things differently with Micah as he may well be my last horse that I will ride into old age. Thank you so much for all you do!

Sally Leong - 7 years ago Reply

Hi Carolyn,

I am looking forward to practicing these exercises with my horses when we are ready.


Lori Hersh - 7 years ago Reply

Hi! I have always loved horses but only recently became a horse owner. I have 2 horses. My gleding “Steele” is 14 and used to be worked in halter events by a previous owner. We have a strong bond. My mare, ‘Mystery” is 6 , was trained under saddle at 3 yrs but then has not been ridden in 2 1/2 yrs. She is coming along though I have not yet worked up to saddling or bridling yet. She is workable and responsive but has issues with seperation anxiety when away from my gelding. I use natural horsemanship methods with both horses and feel we have come a long way in achieving a respectful bond. I am interested in your methods and look forward to following along! Thanks!

StephanieBrinkman - 7 years ago Reply

Hello Carolyn, Stephanie from Vermont here. I am am very interested in learning more about your Uberstreichen exercises. I participated in the insiders circle this summer w/ my horse Chamois. She is a 6 year old paint with a downhill build so I am hoping these exercises will help her carry herself better while under saddle. I miss our bi-monthly calls but have been following your blog religiously so it is nice to stay connected in that way. Thank you for all your help. My horses especially thank you.

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